Graduate Programs

M.S. in Design and Merchandising

Meet a DM Graduate Alum

Erin Adams

Erin Adams, M.S., LEED® AP

"Whatever you do in your design philosophy, be brave . . . never wish you hadn't taken your vision right to the end. Make a bold statement."
-Roger Banks- Pye

Even as a little girl, I always knew that my future career would involve teaching. The interior design masters program at CSU allowed me to see my dreams come to fruition. Certainly, the interior design education I received was second to none, but it was the faculty that made my experience at CSU even more extraordinary. The interior design faculty led by example, serving as dedicated mentors and demonstrating the skills necessary to become a successful educator. The graduate teaching assistantship presented the opportunity for hands-on advancement of my teaching skills and offered a platform to develop a pedagogical framework for active learning. The education and experience gained at CSU has prepared me for a successful career as both a practicing professional and an interior design educator. I am currently working as an assistant professor of interior design at Western Carolina University and have recently co-launched the Aurora Professional Designers Guild, the first full-service design firm in Sylva, NC.


Sarah Campernel, M.S., LEED AP

Sarah Campernel

“There isn’t anything more meaningful to me than helping students catch the vision of how interior spaces shape human behavior . . . and then observe them grasp how their designs can improve their client’s quality of life.”

The interior design area of specialization within the Design and Merchandising Graduate Program at CSU has led me to a successful career. What excited me about this program of study was its focus on providing students with the knowledge and critical thinking skills to use their creativity and problem solving abilities to enhance the lives of others through the design of healthy interior environments. The exceptional faculty encouraged me to challenge myself throughout this program and taught me the importance of human-centered research, which has prepared me for a successful career as a practicing professional and interior design educator.