Designing with Walt
There are few career opportunities that embody the spirit of creativity as much as working as a Walt Disney Imagineer. For Victoria Rouse (B.F.A. ’18), becoming an interior design intern as a member of the Imagineering team and Parks Department at the Walt Disney World Company less than a month after graduation was a huge honor.
“I am fortunate to have the opportunity to work with the Animal Kingdom’s Baby Care facility,” she says. Rouse helps with chair selections, space planning for Disney’s Vacation Club Ice Cream Parlor, and other projects. “I assist the team with drawings, material selections and boards, and submittals, and I have had the opportunity to visit construction sites such as Toy Story Land.”
Originally from Florida, Rouse chose to study at NYIT because she loved the atmosphere as well as the opportunities the school provided. Initially interested in studying architecture, she ended up focusing on interior design because she felt it afforded her the opportunity to be expressive in many different ways. “Concepts, functionality, colors, textures, structures, lighting, all need to be taken into account,” Rouse says. “And of course, the need to really understanding the client. I love the fact that I can dive deep into a person’s personality, interests, and needs.”
According to Rouse, NYIT prepared her for her current position, equipping her with time management as well as team building skills. “I had the opportunity to work in group projects and learn how to work with others, whether it was scheduling, organization, communication, collaboration, or presentation,” says Rouse about her time in NYIT’s Interior Design program. “Being a part of a team has helped me to communicate clearly and work with different people— not just the interiors group.”
Rouse cultivated her network and skills outside of class as well. She joined the Interior Design Club, American Society of Interior Designers, and International Interior Design Association, and attended events for Interior Design Legislation New York. She was a recipient of the Brendalyn Stempel Scholarship and the Student Volunteer of the Year Award and was on the winning team of the Imagining Textiles 2016 Student Design Challenge sponsored by Kravet.
Rouse feels Disney is a good fit, and she is hoping to become a full-time employee in the future. “I love the beauty of making a dream into a reality while creating memories of a lifetime—that is truly my favorite part,” she says. “To me, it is important to understand that our job is to put others first and to create a story and keeping that story alive. If I have achieved that, then I am truly happy!”