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Our Design program focuses on teaching the visual communication skills that will open the door to a rewarding career.

  • SVA is the best choice for students looking for design schools in New York City
  • Our mission is to educate designers who aspire to be professional artists
  • Students will understand scale, texture, symmetry, tension, line, color, tone, balance, contrast, pattern and perspective
  • Multidisciplinary major includes graphic design, interactive design, product development design, motion graphics and 3D design

Request information at admissions@sva.edu to learn more about the undergraduate graphic design school at SVA.

The Design program focuses on teaching visual communication problem solving, a skill that can open the door to a host of rewarding careers. Our program is a multidisciplinary educational system in itself, offering three separate majors that include Graphic Design, Motion Graphics and 3D Design.

In addition to a distinguished faculty that includes eight Hall of Fame laureates, we offer a wide range of course options that are tailored to each student’s strengths and needs. We achieve this by offering more studio courses than any institution in the world. This gives students the opportunity to develop their own vision, making the entire educational experience particularly empowering. There are no cookie-cutter portfolios here. Of the three disciplines that students can major in, each of these areas can be further refined, giving students more possibilities to find their niche. For example, Graphic Design can be further subdivided into package design, editorial design, information graphics, corporate identity, publication design, CD packaging, book jacket design, environmental design, and website design.

Here are some other features that set SVA’s Design Department apart from the crowd:
  • The Senior Library: This annual compendium of the best student work has become the benchmark of creative problem solving since its inception. Each edition runs about 500 pages and is distributed to the visual-communications industry, and has garnered all the major industry awards. Needless to say, this helps students markedly in acquiring the job of their choice.
  • Workshops: The department offers intensive one-week workshops taught by industry luminaries like Paula Scher, John C. Jay, Carin Goldberg and Cheryl Heller.                  
  • Exhibitions: Unlike any other art school’s graphic design department, ours holds exhibitions at professional venues, including The One Club, Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central Station, and The Whitney Museum of American Art, as well as an annual end-of-year exhibition at the Art Directors Club. These shows are widely attended and over the years have been covered by NBC, CBS, ABC, and CNN.                  
  • Competitions: Our department encourages and often supports major design and advertising competitions that include: The Art Directors Club, The One Club, Society of Publication Designers, The Type Directors Club, Print, How, CA, Step, and ID design competitions, as well as the Graphis New Talent Annual. Each year our students garner more than half of the 500 entries, an unparalleled achievement in design education.                  
  • Professional Organizations: In an effort to introduce them to the design communities, we enroll all our students into the AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Artists) and the Art Directors Club, two of the most prestigious design organizations in the country.
  • Scholarships: The department holds end-of-the-year scholarship reviews and offers scholarships to deserving students.
  • Industry Reviews: At the end of the senior year, industry professionals conduct two separate reviews for Graphic Design, and 3D Design majors. Here, student work is not only reviewed by the professional community at large, the event also gives entrée to a vast networking system resulting in high-level employment opportunities.
  • Screenings: Motion Graphics majors have an end-of-year screening of their work at Lincoln Center, an event that is attended by industry professionals. Many students secure employment as a result of this showing.
  • Unique Class Offerings: In addition to the diverse curriculum, the department offers a class that can be understood as the foundation of a visual-literacy education. This course is taught exclusively at SVA, and the results have been documented in two major books. Many schools have since adapted this methodology, based on SVA student work as it appears in these publications.
  • Special Courses: We embrace the idea of students working intensely on a project outside of their major. One course we offer along these lines is called “The Project.” Here junior students are given the opportunity to produce a full-length mini feature film and participate in every aspect of filmmaking—from writing, casting to directing and editing. The goal of this course is not necessarily to produce filmmakers but to give students a venue in which to overcome specific creative challenges. By doing so our students are able to develop and bolster their conceptual and problem-solving skills.
  • Workshops: Our department offers three distinct workshop spaces in order to help students exercise and further their skills. The Digital Imaging Center is a state of the art computer-based workshop with over 150 stations. The Sixth Floor Workshop encourages hand skills while the 3D workshop is equipped to help students execute dimensional projects. The department web site is a destination where students contribute work to showcase their projects it also includes many other department functions to help create a digital environment for students and faculty.
  • Internships: Supplementing the school’s internship program, the department offers additional opportunities for students. Our faculty, which numbers over 100, hires a constant stream of interns. This not only enhances our students’ educational experience but also maximizes their postgraduate employment opportunities.

In short, this is what the Design program has to offer: An award-winning faculty. A comprehensive and innovative curriculum. The clout of New York City. Special programs tailored to give you every edge in the marketplace. In short, we offer you a place where you can design your own destiny.

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School of Visual Arts | 209 East 23 Street, NY, NY 10010-3994 | Tel: 212.592.2000 | Fax: 212.725.3587