The graphic design program at Bowling Green State University was recently ranked as one of the best in the United States.
Housed in the School of Art in the College of Arts and Sciences, the program was ranked No. 49 among the nation’s public universities, No. 23 in the Midwest and No. 5 in Ohio, according to Animation Career Review. More than 700 colleges and universities’ graphic design programs were considered in the ranking process.
Programs are rated on academic reputation, admission selectivity, depth and breadth of the program, value as it relates to tuition and indebtedness and employment data.
“It is good to know that our program is recognized for the top-quality outcomes our program produces, and that our value is recognized,” said Jenn Stucker, chair and professor of the BGSU graphic design division. “One of the real strengths of our program, that isn’t always measurable, is the impact it has on the student as an individual. We don’t have a homogenized student we are trying to send out into the world. We believe wholeheartedly that we are graduating thinkers with curious minds. Because styles, trends and technology are ever-changing, we work toward developing students who can be resilient, creative and adaptable in thinking their way forward through the challenges.”
BGSU students graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design after successfully completing courses such as Design for Social Impact, Graphic Design Thinking, System-Based and Time-Based Graphic Design and User Experience and Interface Design (UX/UI). They also complete the collaborative and community engagement practicum, senior studio, senior thesis and an internship.
An added benefit for students is the opportunity to connect with alumni of the program through special presentations as well as the annual portfolio review day. The experience helps students perfect their portfolios and verbal presentation skills. Some students get internships and jobs from connecting with reviewers.
With the university’s focus on creating public good, the graphic design program's curriculum and experiences align well.
“We firmly believe in our responsibility to improve everyday lives. We must understand technology as well as people, culture and commerce, and at the same time design for it,” Stucker said. “Graduates of the program will exhibit skills in team building, collaboration, storytelling, intervention design, and they will know how to develop community partnerships within a professional work ethic. Our faculty are often creators and producers of these community engagement projects, so we let our students see ‘behind the curtain’ where they get the opportunity to see the challenges of producing large-scale, community-based projects. We use them as learning opportunities to empower students with the confidence to create their own projects and to be fluid to problem-solve along the way.”