Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Graphic Design

School of the Arts

 
Program description

Graphic design is a creative and analytical process that integrates art and technology to communicate ideas and information. The goal of the Department of Graphic Design at VCU is to educate students to become innovators and leaders in three related areas of professional practice: print design, sequential design and interaction design.

Career opportunities

Graphic Designer, Web Designer/Developer, Art Director, Exhibit Designer, User Interface Designer

Change of major requirements

Completion of the Art Foundation Program is a prerequisite for entry into all fine art and design departments.

Students are required to submit their application here: http://arts.vcu.edu/admissions/how-to-apply/current-vcu-student/

Typical Application deadlines:

For Spring: November 1st

For Fall: April 1st

A portfolio is required (more information here: http://arts.vcu.edu/admissions/how-to-apply/current-vcu-student/)


Bachelor-level job titles
  • Brand Strategist
  • Communication Strategist
  • Digital Content Creator
  • Exhibit Designer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Interactive Design
  • Layout Designer
  • Logo/Brand Designer
  • Marketing Communicator
  • Motion Graphics Designer
  • Packaging Design
  • Photoshop Artist
Graduate and professional level job titles
  • Art Director
  • Communications Director
  • Marketing Manager
  • Producer
Degree requirements in Bulletin
Plan of study in Bulletin
Highest level of math required
  • MATH 131
Science required
  • Core only
Foreign language requirements
  • No
Additional tuition/fees
  • Yes
GPA requirements (to progress/graduate in the major)
  • 2.5
Department name:
Department of Graphic Design
Building/room location:
Pollak Building, Room 332
Campus (where 75% of courses are taken):
Monroe park
Phone:
(804) 828-1709
Email:
gdes@vcu.edu

Major map compass icon
Major map

Explore
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Explore UNIV 291 modules: Maximizing and Advancing in AFO.  
  • Apply to University, VCUarts, and external grants and scholarships.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers in your field of study.
  • Build a LinkedIn profile with Career Services, connect to at least 10 people, and check out the VCU alumni page.
  • Join Students Today Alumni Tomorrow (STAT) to connect to VCU traditions, networking opportunities, and fellow Rams.
  • Access your free credit report and begin making responsible credit choices to prepare for your future.
  • Digitally archive studio & personal work.
  • Research VCUArts alumni for networking and mentorship opportunities.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Keep all your Graphic Design project work for end of the year Sophomore Portfolio Review.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Consider Qatar student exchange
  • Apply for VCUarts Dean's International Study Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
  • Collaborate with students from other Arts disciplines on a project that will help you and others. Undergraduate Research Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Prepare for internships. Internship Support Grants.
  • Seek out volunteer work/projects, with an emphasis on graphic design.   
  • Apply for a show of their own work or curatorial project at The Anderson this year and forward.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • Attend scholarship meetings and meet with advisor regarding scholarships as needed 
  • Prepare for Junior Review. All work from your Junior year should be kept for consideration.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Consider Qatar student exchange
  • Apply for Dean’s International Study grant for research study abroad
  • Consider working with students from other Arts disciplines on a project that will help you and others. Undergraduate Research Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least 1 year in advance of deadlines. Study for and complete any exams the summer before senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Attend GDES and Depot workshops hosted by VCUarts alumni.

Excel
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Study Abroad is not allowed during the Fall or Spring of your Senior year.
  • Carefully consider which electives will help you be marketable in your desired career path. Electives from Graphic Design, Arts Cross Disciplinary and Innovate can add to your skill sets in a meaningful way.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Bring back work and research from study abroad and share with your colleagues. The Department hosts lectures and workshops led by returning students to help others learn and think about study abroad
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain research experience with Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program.
  • Seek out project opportunities and jobs with an emphasis on work that will translate as graphic design.    
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
  • Follow up on all job opportunities shared on the gdes-all listserv.
  • Attend all alumni events and job fairs offered during Senior Studio.
Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2019-2020

Graphic Design

School of the Arts

Concentration(s):
No concentration
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE GET REAL EXPERIENCE PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
Explore Year 1
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to review your CSI self-report, start goal planning, and to discuss tutoring, electives, & degree progression.
  • Take a tour to learn about library spaces, services, & how to get research help.
  • Map out a 4-year course plan in Degree Works' Student Educational Planner.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.  
  • Explore UNIV 291 modules: Maximizing and Advancing in AFO.  
  • Apply to University, VCUarts, and external grants and scholarships.
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers in your field of study.
  • Build a LinkedIn profile with Career Services, connect to at least 10 people, and check out the VCU alumni page.
  • Join Students Today Alumni Tomorrow (STAT) to connect to VCU traditions, networking opportunities, and fellow Rams.
  • Access your free credit report and begin making responsible credit choices to prepare for your future.
  • Digitally archive studio & personal work.
  • Research VCUArts alumni for networking and mentorship opportunities.
Experience Year 2
  • Get familiar with the research process with the VCU Libraries Research Basics Guide. Ask questions about how to use the library.
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes, and strategies for success in your program.
  • Keep all your Graphic Design project work for end of the year Sophomore Portfolio Review.
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year-long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Get to know other VCU students and meet new friends from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural or identity-related organization.
  • Consider Qatar student exchange
  • Apply for VCUarts Dean's International Study Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
  • Collaborate with students from other Arts disciplines on a project that will help you and others. Undergraduate Research Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
  • Gain practical experience related to career goals through internships, shadowing, part-time work, or independent skill building.
  • Create an ePortfolio to document academic/professional experiences, accomplishments, and reflections.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and other professional development events. 
  • Prepare for internships. Internship Support Grants.
  • Seek out volunteer work/projects, with an emphasis on graphic design.   
  • Apply for a show of their own work or curatorial project at The Anderson this year and forward.
  • Get plugged into VCULink to connect with students and alumni.
  • Conduct informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Consider who you would ask to serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
  • Meet with a coach at The Money Spot to set financial goals, understand student loans, and create spending plans.
Year 3
  • See your academic and career advisors regularly to discuss your progress towards graduation and career planning.
  • Enhance your business, software, technology and creative skills using LinkedIn Learning.
  • Deepen your expertise at finding information in your discipline by working with your subject expert librarian & using research guides.
  • Attend scholarship meetings and meet with advisor regarding scholarships as needed 
  • Prepare for Junior Review. All work from your Junior year should be kept for consideration.
  • Actively develop your communication and interpersonal skills for future work on multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Apply to be a Diversity Ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.
  • Richmond is known for hosting a wide array of festivals! Learn about new cultures, food, and music by attending one of these events.
  • Consider Qatar student exchange
  • Apply for Dean’s International Study grant for research study abroad
  • Consider working with students from other Arts disciplines on a project that will help you and others. Undergraduate Research Grants: http://arts.vcu.edu/grants/
  • Talk to advisors, faculty, and career services about graduate school versus a job.
  • Research graduate/professional schools at least 1 year in advance of deadlines. Study for and complete any exams the summer before senior year. 
  • Prepare for job offer negotiation by researching salaries, benefits, and other opportunities for flexibility.
  • Attend GDES and Depot workshops hosted by VCUarts alumni.
Excel Year 4
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met. 
  • Study Abroad is not allowed during the Fall or Spring of your Senior year.
  • Carefully consider which electives will help you be marketable in your desired career path. Electives from Graphic Design, Arts Cross Disciplinary and Innovate can add to your skill sets in a meaningful way.
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in your field.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations.
  • Bring back work and research from study abroad and share with your colleagues. The Department hosts lectures and workshops led by returning students to help others learn and think about study abroad
  • Reflect on the experiential learning you have engaged in thus far, and discuss with current or potential mentors (peers, faculty, advisors, alumni, professionals).
  • Continue to engage in research to create more content for your ePortfolio.
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other conferences. 
  • Gain research experience with Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program.
  • Seek out project opportunities and jobs with an emphasis on work that will translate as graphic design.    
  • Complete exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for after graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Have a personal statement or cover letter reviewed and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
  • Engage with the VCU Alumni Association at Grad Fair, Grad Bash, and by joining a VCULink Industry Network and alumni chapter as you prepare to graduate.
  • Follow up on all job opportunities shared on the gdes-all listserv.
  • Attend all alumni events and job fairs offered during Senior Studio.