The institute will open its doors to the public from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday for a quarterly open house
On display will be student work like three-dimensional models, some crafted with imaginary clients in mind. They include a "blinged" chandelier and dining room for Beyoncé or a sweeping desert architectural design for a residence themed "Arabian Nights."
Students, alumni and professors will also be on hand to answer questions and give classroom demonstrations.
For many in a tough economy, the first questions are about viability and finding a job.
"We take job placement very seriously here," Deladurantey said.
She said the institute has more than a 95% success rate of placing students with bachelor's degrees in top-ranked design firms and is accredited by the Council for Interior Design.
Through internship placement assistance, networking with industry professionals and even a freelance board — where local homeowners and businesses post contract jobs specifically for college students — many of the students begin working before graduation.
Michelle-Newman, who will graduate with an associate's degree next year, said she has already seen success with her start-up company, Instyle Design.
"There are not a lot of people out there learning the gamut of things that are taught here," Michelle-Newman said of taking courses that range from design history to computer drafting. "That's why students are so qualified. Even people who have been in the business for 15 years are finding out how things have changed so much."
The institute's extensive curriculum also gives students a strong background in building codes and changing state regulations, which can give them an edge in ecodesign careers as legislators become more environmentally conscious.
"There is a big difference between designers and decorators," Michelle-Newman said. "The students here are designers. They have the qualifications to go on and do so much."
If You Go
What: Interior Designers Institute open house
Where:1061 Camelback St., Newport Beach
When: Noon to 10 a.m. Saturday
Information: (949) 675-4451