Graphic Designer: Visualizer, Collaborator and Leader
Graphic Design permeates our lives from packaging, signage, video and film, diagrams, presentations, magazines and newspapers, television, books, street signs, mapping, music collections, computer games, mobile apps, websites and kiosk interfaces . This requires independent and collaborative thinking, creative problem solving/analytics and design, creative writing, design for the public good, exploration of alternative visual communication methods, and a solid understanding of modern professional practices to solve today’s complex problems. The designer's broad visual, verbal, written and conceptual skills are valued by corporations, product manufacturers, advertising and in-house agencies, design firms, and industries in need of individuals who work fluently with emerging technologies. Graphic designers– those who help make sense of the information that surrounds us daily– are equal parts visualizer, collaborator and leader.
About the Division of Graphic Design (BGSU GD)
The Bowling Green State University Graphic Design program educates and mentors its students to become independent and collaborative innovators and leaders in the field of graphic design. Our award-winning program is dynamic, enterprising and responsive, and leads to a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design. Our multi-faceted curricula merges design ideologies and research with appropriate aesthetic and communication methods through intensive critical analysis, exploration and experimentation. Students are taught and trained to be mindful professionals and socio-politically aware stewards for the profession and the world. Our practical and theoretical approach to foster and promote the clarity of communication is the foundation for a progressive and fluid curriculum— one that graduates thinkers with curious minds.
Animation Career Review ranked BGSU’s Graphic Design program #10 in the Midwest and #17 in the nation in 2015 for top graphic design schools and colleges.
Learn from talented, regionally, nationally and internationally recognized faculty members with a variety of expertise in typography, design history, information graphics, interactive design, emerging media, community engagement, design thinking and creative placemaking.
Benefit from small class sizes, close faculty attention and progressive facilities, studios and galleries.
Gain real world experience from area design studios and firms through our required internship program.
Hear firsthand from today’s leading design professionals, innovators and strategists through our visiting lectures and workshops.
Enjoy access to phenomenal library collections and image resources including: the Popular Culture Library, ARTstor, OhioLINK and vast repositories of literature online via Jerome’s Library website, plus full access to the Collab Lab.
Take advantage of the close proximity to some of the country’s finest art collections; within driving distance to the Toledo Museum of Art and other museums in Detroit, Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati; and even Chicago is four hours away.
Develop a global perspective through study abroad opportunities in Florence, Italy at SACI and other national and international opportunities.
Connect with other Graphic Design students, discuss current issues, participate in workshops, demonstrations and competitions, and enjoy field trips, art shows and social events as a member of the BGSU AIGA Student Chapter.
- Identify and analyze social challenges through the study and application of design thinking, innovative problem solving and integrative design practices;
- Demonstrate knowledge of visual literacy;
- Demonstrate conceptual skills to inquire, interpret and illustrate an idea for an unknown audience via empathetic and iterative processes through visual thinking of sketching, prototyping, and implementation;
- Exhibit skills in team building, collaboration, storytelling and intervention design as well as developing community partnerships along with a professional work ethic;
- Demonstrate knowledge of graphic design related tools for application of practices and processes of the industry;
- Apply both verbal and visual presentation skills; and
- Research, debate and critique complex social problems.
The Division of Graphic Design (faculty group) is a signing member of the Designers Accord, a nonprofit coalition of designers, educators, researchers, engineers, business consultants, and corporations, focused on working together to create positive environmental and social impact. As such, our Graphic Design student majors and non-majors alike are being asked to voluntarily join the Division in its support for sustainable design practices by having a keen awareness for, and a full intention towards, reducing their individual impact on our environment. A commitment to this initiative could include, but not be limited to: responsible and reduced printing output; increased use of environmentally-friendly project materials; reduced overall use of total project materials as an alternative creative solution; monitored and reduced electric power consumption whenever possible; and proper disposal of all recycled and recyclable materials.
On a national level, all Designers Accord adopters, supporters, and endorsers follow a basic code of conduct:
Do no harm
Communicate and collaborate
Keep learning, keep teaching
Instigate meaningful change
Make theory action
The BGSU Graphic Design facilities are housed in two buildings. Our main classroom, known as the CAVE (Center for Advanced Visualization and Education) Lab, is located in our Fine Arts Center. This large space includes 20 state-of-the-art Macintosh workstations outfitted with the Adobe Creative Cloud and the Adobe Typeface Library, which affords students access to over 2,300 of the strongest and most respected typefaces available. The space also contains color printers, bookbinding equipment, trimmers, button makers, a vinyl cutter plus a thirty seat lecture space on the other half of the room. A majority of the studio art courses are also in Fine Arts Center, which allows students ease of access and inspiration to a variety of multidisciplinary approaches to their work.
Our other classroom space in located in the Wolfe Center for The Arts. This building, created by the internationally known architectural firm Snøhetta and creators of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum, houses our second lab with another 20 state-of-the-art workstations, printer, texts and access door to the adjacent Digital Arts classroom for easy collaboration connections.
BGSU AIGA Student Chapter
BGSU, the School of Art, and the Division of Graphic Design, in affiliation with AIGA Toledo, fully supports, and offers advising, mentorship and resources for, the BGSU AIGA Student Chapter, our highly respected student-run organization of AIGA, the Professional Association for Design. This AIGA and University partially funded organization is available to all undergraduates with a content focus toward graphic design majors. The overall goal of the student chapter is to promote awareness of design, to highlight advances and opportunities in the field, and to assist younger design students in their individual and collective efforts to expand their design experiences. Chapter activities include at least one trip per year to a major city, as well as several regional trips, to visit printers, design studios, museums and art centers. The chapter frequently assists in hosting local, regional and national speakers involved in the design profession, many of whom are alumni of the program. The chapter meets at least once a month to do such things as: plan club activities, attend lectures, view movies of interest, and discuss topical design issues. All interested students are encouraged to contact Instructor Liz Bayan (firstname.lastname@example.org), faculty advisor to the group, for further information and contact with the current slate of student board members.
2018 BGSU AIGA Student Chapter Meeting Times:
Every other Tuesday, 5:00pm, Room 1030 (The Cave)
February 13: For the Love of Deadlines
Ah, February, the season of love...and school deadlines. Come find a little respite at the next AIGA BGSU meeting, where we will be collaborating with the BGSU Campus Cursive chapter to create love letters & cards for charitable organizations! If you need some critique for any upcoming School of Art deadlines (hint hint BFA submissions), we can look at those collectively too. Bring a friend!
February 27: Command X Night
AIGA BGSU is hosting the first LIVE design competition in BGSUGD History! (Hold for applause.) Do you think you have what it takes to go head to head with your design peers and win this inaugural event? Test your design prowess by working against the clock to create the best creative and impress the judges. COMMAND X was created for the AIGA Design Conferences; the event “is a live design competition held at the Conference where up-and-coming designers compete live in an elimination style fashion.” While not as intense as the National Conference, AIGA BGSU’s Command X competition also serves to show your GD peers just how great you are; and yes, you do get prizes!
March 13: Hand Lettering Night & Alum Visit
AIGA BGSU welcomes recent alum Melanie Givens back for a talk & workshop centered around the art of Hand Lettering! Melanie, a designer at NORTH, has a passion for freelance lettering, and she has the skills to prove it. Melanie will be giving a brief presentation followed be a free demo afterwards! You don't want to miss this!
April 10: Portfolio/Resume Prep
With the upcoming Portfolio review looming overhead, AIGA BGSU welcomes all design students for a portfolio and resume review meeting. Bring your stuff and let us help you finish your editing so that you don't have to pull an all nighter putting it together! Even if you feel like you're pretty far behind, we will assist you in gathering your work. Underclassmen – come check out what you will have to do very soon!
The Division of Graphic Design prides itself in connecting students with prominent international, national and regional leaders and innovators in the field of visual communication. Our speakers range from illustrators, artists, designers, motion designers, creative directors, strategists, authors, educators, entrepreneurs, critics, and change agents. Beyond a public talk, many of our keynoters visit the classrooms for one and one discussions, critiques and/or workshops specifically for engaging with our dynamic students. Through hosting national AIGA Design Education Conferences, partnerships with AIGA Toledo, and support from the College of Arts & Sciences and the School of Art, we are grateful for this stellar list of speakers we have been able to share with our design students and the NW Ohio/ SE Michigan Design and Art community.
*Denotes BGSU Alumni
Design for Social Good
This camp is available to high schoolers (9th-11th grade) who are interested in learning more about Graphic Design. Our Design for Social Good Camp runs July 18-20, 2018 to share how the power of graphic design can be used for making a meaningful difference in everyday lives, communities, and the world. For more information about this wonderful opportunity, please visit the Pre-College page here.
If you are a current BGSU GD student or recent graduate who is interested in being a camp volunteer, please email Division Chair, Jenn Stucker: email@example.com
Trained as resourceful visual communicators, our students have developed successful careers as graphic designers, art directors and communications specialists in a wide variety of related fields. Our alumni work for nationally recognized creative firms and major corporations across the country and provide a valuable network for our recent graduates' entry into the profession.
Places our alumni have worked (or continue to work at) includes:
Nike Global / Thirst / Obama for America 2012 Campaign / Organizing for America / Abercrombie &Fitch / LPK/ Communica / Madhouse/ HansonInc. / Hart Associates / Spoke / Interrupt Marketing / Uber / Noir Marketing + PR/ MarkIt / Toledo Museum of Art / Rogue Fitness / SomataMason / Pukka Headwear / Delicious Design League / Owens Corning / F+W Media/ Storyforge / JP MorganChase & Co. / Cleveland Institute of Art / Progressive / Guide Studios / United Health Group / Landor Associates / University of Miami / University of Findlay / Ohio State University/ University of Toledo/ FormATECH Exhibits / Radiance Technologies / American Greetings / Mercy Health / Root Inc. / Ologie / Stephenson + Taylor / Twist Creative / Sarankco / Gravity / Cooper-Smith Advertising / FORM / RGI International/Midmark Animal Health / The Andersons / 10 Red Design / Trait / Smart Data Systems / thehugbox / Mindquake Creative / Bottle Rocket/ Aespire / J.Crew / Aquent / Epsilon / The X-Factor / Res Publica Group / Teal Tractor / Marxent / Pieces of Me / Hobby Lobby Corporate / Gerber / Studio SC / 50,000 Feet / Gensler / Thread Marketing / RP Marketing
Positions our alumni have held include:
Account Manager / Art Director / Brand Ambassador / Brand Manager / Communications Specialist / Copywriter / Corporate Executive/ Corporate Media & Identity Designer / Creative Consultant / Creative Director / Creative Placemaker / Creative Technologist/ Design Strategist / Design Director / Design Thinking Facilitator / Digital Content Marketing Manager/ Entrepreneur / Experience Designer / Freelance Designer / Graphic Designer / Illustrator / In-house Designer/ Industrial Designer / Information Architect (IA) / Interactive Designer / Local, State & Federal Government Communications Designer / Designer for Management, Scientific & Technical, Manufacturers and Retailers / Marketing Design Supervisor / Advertising & Public Relations/ Medical Illustrator / Motion Designer / Museum In-house Designer / Catalog, Newspaper, Periodical, Book & Directory Designer / Designer for Non-profit / Printing Manager / Production Designer / Project Developer / Project Manager / Schools, Colleges & Universities In-house Designer / Senior Exhibit / Social Media Content Creator / User Experience Designer (UX) / Visual Design Specialist / Web Designer