CCS Transportation Design is the best in the world

Trans Best in World Hero

CCS Ranked #3 in Design by LinkedIn

CCS places more design graduates into the transportation industry than any other school. This proves our graduates are the most sought after for their design expertise and also shows the important role our faculty play in preparing students for their professional lives.

In the half century since our program began, other schools have joined the party. Their graduates find jobs, too: working for our graduates.

Did you know?

  • CCS was ranked the #3 design school in the United States by LinkedIn based on alumni success (and the only school in the top three to offer Transporation Design).
  • Both CCS graduate and undergraduate programs were included in DesignIntelligence's "America's Best Architecture & Design Schools 2016" rankings. 
  • Our alumni are designers at every major car manufacturer and at nearly all the Tier 1 auto suppliers such as Visteon; at racing and defense companies like Pratt & Miller; with consultant firms as far away as Vietnam and in the shipyards of Abu Dhabi.
  • Before becoming the head of design for Ford of Europe, one of our alums led the design of the new Ford Mustang and is one of a hundred CCS alums who design for the company.
  • GM Design employs more than 175 of our alumni, one of whom led interior design for the Chevy Silverado—2014 Truck of the Year at the North American International Auto Show.
  • CCS won Most Successful School Award from Car Design News Interior Motives Design Awards, two years in a row.

  • CCS graduates account for 60% of Chrysler Design: the entire design team for the 2014 Chrysler 200, Jeep Renegade and Jeep Cherokee was also Team CCS.

  • The heads of design at Toyota Motor Corporation's North American Design Studio, Kia America and Nissan Design Europe are all graduates of CCS.
  • Nearly all the designers at Volvo Heavy Truck are—you got it—CCS alumni.
  • CCS grads are key designers at power sports company studios, including Bombardier in Quebec, Eric Buell Racing in the United States, and KTM in Austria.
  • Edward Welburn, GM’s Vice President for Global Design sits on our Board of Trustees (CCS's governing board) with alumnus Ralph Gilles, President and CEO of the SRT Brand. Ed and Ralph keep a close watch on the quality of CCS's Transportation Design program.

This list of CCS alumni who occupy top positions in the automotive industry is impressive, but what’s more impressive is their continued support of current students. It’s not unusual to have Ralph Gilles, President and CEO of the SRT Brand and Senior Vice President of Design at Chrysler Group LLC, provide a private tour of the Viper plant to graduating seniors.


Every year at the North American International Auto Show, dozens of CCS alumni lead the overall design and production of many of the industry’s top car manufacturers.

Learn more

Meet some of our alumni, as they stand by their work at the North American International Auto Show:

Don't take our word for it. Even national media has recognized what we do.

News stories about our alumni and their impact appear daily. Whether it’s Joel Piaskowski being named Ford’s director of design Europe or learning about Dillon Blanski’s inspiration as the exterior designer for Lincoln Motor Company, it’s clear to see CCS alumni are doing big things:

Why all this success from one college in Detroit? The answer: our faculty. 

With more than 100 years of experience from dozens of faculty, students learn from the best. Here is a sampling of our faculty and the expertise they bring to the class room each and every day.

Paul Snyder – Paul and Helen Farago Chair of Transportation Design, Snyder comes to CCS from Honda Research and Development where he led teams of designers in the creation of global design projects. For 25 years he has designed cars and trucks for a number of brands, including Ford, Lincoln, Renault, Honda, and Acura.

Sooshin Choi – CCS provost, who holds more than 40 patents for his automotive design work and was the design director at both Kia Motors and Daewoo Motors.

Alexander Klatt – former vice president of global design at Fisker Automotive, where he led a world-class team for the innovative Karma platform, among the world’s first luxury hybrid electric cars.

Bryon Fitzpatrick - is a celebrated, internationally renowned educator and designer with a career that includes significant experience in the UK, Europe, the United States, Asia and Australia.

Carolyn Peters – former senior designer for General Motors in the Automotive Interior Design Studios of Oldsmobile, Cadillac and Saturn

Carrie Marchand – digital sculptor, General Motors; worked on Buick LaCrosse, Saturn Sky and Chevy Volt

Chris Piscitelli – senior designer, General Motors

Chris Welch – senior designer, Chrysler; worked on Jeep Grand Cherokee, Ram Truck, Viper and Jeep Grand Wagoneer

Colin Phipps – senior exterior designer, Cadillac

Clyde Foles – has designed agricultural equipment, automotive interior/exterior, mass transit systems, military vehicles, recreational vehicles, two wheel vehicles and class eight trucks

John Manoogian – more than 30 years of design experience at General Motors

Kunihisa Ito – more than 30 years of international automotive design experience at Honda, Suzuki, Subaru, Yamaha Motors and Volkswagen

Michael Pouncy – sculpting model manager, General Motors; worked on the Buick Lucerne, Cadillac CTS and Pontiac Solstice

Pierre-Paul Andriani – senior alias sculptor, General Motors; worked on GMC Terrain, Chevrolet Volt and Cadillac CTS, XTS and ATS

Steve Hung – more than 15 years at Ford, where he worked on vehicles ranging from race cars to passenger cars and light trucks

Eric Tuft -international designer responsible for the design of both the Lincoln MKC exterior and Ford Explorer interior.

Tom Roney - more than 33 years of design experience, Roney co-founded A&R Industrial Design in 1988 as a consultant firm specializing in heavily engineered products and ergonomics.

We've got great alumni and faculty, but did you know our current students are rock stars too?

Our current students are already making a name for themselves by winning nearly every design competition, challenge and contest across the globe. Not to mention one of our current transportation design students is starring on an automotive design reality show. And we know this because, once again, the media puts them in the spotlight. You can only imagine how much easier it is to land your dream job when, before you even graduate, the media recognizes your success. Check out some of our latest victories:



When you are a Transportation Design student at CCS, you take your major studio courses in the A. Alfred Taubman Center for Design Education, where General Motors launched the first automotive design department in the world.

Providing top-notch facilities is a high priority at CCS. We want your design environment here on campus to include tools and technology you will be expected to use in your profession.

The Taubman Center is a state-of-the-art facility fully equipped with:

  • Clay modeling studio
  • Car-sized ventilated spray booth
  • Rapid prototyping studio
  • 5 3-D printers
  • CNC five access mill
  • Laser cutter
  • Imaging Center
  • Cintiq labs
  • 3-D Handi Scan








At CCS, our students have the opportunity to work on sponsored research projects with industry insiders. Research projects are highly conceptual and allow students the opportunity to participate in creative, research-based assignments within real-world design parameters. Our corporate partners commit design and technical staff to students by providing guidance, expertise and feedback. Organizations financially sponsor conceptual design projects for CCS students and encourage inventive and unique design concepts. The corporate sponsors typically work with teams of CCS undergraduate juniors and seniors or graduate students and are supervised by CCS faculty to pursue new directions in design for their products. CCS’ corporate partners are continuing to expand and diversify their relationships with the College.

Companies who have participated in sponsored research projects:

  • Aluminum Association
  • American Chemistry Council – Plastics Division
  • American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI)
  • ASC Incorporated
  • AISI Wheels Task Force
  • BASF
  • BRP
  • Calty Design Research
  • Chrysler Group LLC
  • Crown Equipment Corporation
  • Daimler Trucks North America
  • Delphi Automotive
  • DURA Automotive
  • EcoMotors International
  • Ferrari
  • Fiat
  • Ford Motor Company
  • General Motors Corporation
  • Hagie Manufacturing
  • Honda R&D Americas, Inc.
  • Hyundai Design
  • Indy Racing League
  • Johnson Controls
  • Key Plastics, Inc.
  • Mahindra GenZe
  • Magna
  • Michelin
  • Meritor
  • National Association for Surface Finishing (NASF)
  • Nissan
  • OSRAM Sylvania
  • Pittsburgh Glass Works
  • Polaris
  • PPG
  • Renault
  • Royal Technologies
  • Subaru
  • Toray International
  • Toyota Motor Corporation
  • Visteon
  • Volkswagen
  • U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC)
  • Ward’s Automotive Group
  • World Technical Services, Inc.

Designed and created by DDM Marketing & Communications.