Major Monday: Graphic Design

Are you artistic and creative?  Do you enjoy working with technology?  If so, Graphic Design may be the right fit for you!

General Description:  Graphic designers, also called graphic artists or communication designers, develop layout and production designs either by hand or using computer software.  They choose specific colors, styles, images and layouts to achieve certain effects and communicate ideas to consumers.  About 24% of graphic designers are self-employed; however, others work for graphic design firms and work with project teams and clients.  As a graphic designer, you could create a logo for a new business, design the cover of a best-seller, or develop the layout and design of a small company’s website!

Education Requirements:  Though it is not required, currently over 80% of working graphic designers have earned their Bachelor’s degree.  Through a Bachelor’s program, students have the opportunity to put together a portfolio exhibiting their unique style and talents.  This portfolio is  key when students graduate and begin applying to jobs!  For examples of graphic design portfolios, please see:

Types of Courses:  Students majoring in Graphic Design should expect to take courses in Studio Art, Principles of Design, Computer Design, Commercial Graphics Production, and Website Design.  Coursework in Marketing, Business, and Writing are also recommended.

Colleges with Graphic Design majors:  Salem State University (Salem, MA), American University (Washington, DC), Assumption College (Worcester, MA), Boston University (Boston, MA), Champlain College (Burlington, VT), Coastal Carolina University (Conway, SC)

Salary and Job Projections:  The median income for graphic designers in 2012 was $44,150 and the industry as a whole is projected to grow at a rate of 7%, which is below the national average.  While employment for graphic designers in newspapers, periodicals, and books is expected to decline 16% by 2022, graphic designers working in computer system designs and related fields are expected to see an increase of 35%!




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