I can recall when I was in school how much of an influence my art teachers had on me. The best teacher makes all the difference. But I feel as a product designer that art teachers focus WAY too much on crafts, illustration and fine arts. I never once had a teacher tell me that I could design products. There is the notion that one has to be a "starving artist" in order to even enjoy making art. All of it is pure BS!
I hope that if I do one day decide to be an art teacher I let my students know THAT YOU DO NOT HAVE TO STARVE TO BE AN ARTIST-THERE IS HOPE!! I hope to encourage them to explore more art careers than just fine arts and crafts. I wish someone had told me about product design before I came here and I hope that if I do teach that my students have the realization I did when I cam to CCS; there is hope as an artist.