The expansive nature of the MFA Design and Technology program attracts students of diverse backgrounds. To ensure that incoming students are fully prepared for the demands of their studio courses, the program holds a pre-orientation summer intensive called Bootcamp, in which incoming DT students deepen their understanding of critical design practice, current Web standards, and coding and brush up on related skills. Bootcamp is an experience unique to the MFA DT program at Parsons and has, over the years, become a rite of passage into the program. All incoming students are expected to enroll in Bootcamp, and each year's entering class emerges from it as a tight-knit community, stronger in their skills as well as in their social bonds.
Bootcamp runs as a 15-day intensive, plus weekend workshops, starting at the end of July or beginning of August. Instruction is divided into three units—Design, Web, and Code—taught by second-year MFA DT students who have earned teaching fellowships. As a pre-enrollment program, Bootcamp carries 0 credits, which means that it does not qualify for regular financial aid but does allow the program to be offered at a fraction of what an equivalent credit-bearing program would cost. Tuition and fees associated with Bootcamp also help to fund its teaching fellowships, which DT students can apply for in their second year.
Expect to work hard, develop program survival skills, make lasting friendships, and elevate your own abilities. In addition to meeting your immediate peers, you'll get to know DT students who are in their thesis year and meet some members of the faculty and administration. You'll also become familiar with the city and the school that are home to MFA DT. Though the experience is considerably different from that of an academic semester, Bootcamp will give you a taste of the culture that defines MFA Design and Technology and prepare you to dive headfirst into your studies.