May 12, 2024

USM’s Graphic Design Program Ranked Among Top Design Schools

Therese Apel

Source: University of Southern Mississippi Facebook Page

The University of Southern Mississippi’s Graphic Design Program has been recognized among the Top Design Schools in the Nation by Graphic Design USA magazine: a ranking coveted by schools and programs of all sizes.

GDUSA is considered an authority in the graphic design industry with a trajectory spanning over 60 years. The selection is based on objective and subjective factors, focusing on personal, professional, and societal growth.

Dr. Chris Winstead, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, praises the graphic design program for being recognized for the third year in a row.

“This recognition highlights the quality of the graphic design education that our faculty are providing at Southern Miss, and also is a testament to the caliber of work that our students consistently produce,” said Winstead. “We know that when they graduate, they will be ready for the workplace and ready to make an impact.”

Jacob Cotton, associate professor of design, echoes Dr. Winstead’s sentiments as Southern Miss continues setting the standard for excellence in design education.

“The Graphic Design Program has a storied tradition of success, and every spring, we see our students graduate and move on to some of the best agencies in the country,” said Cotton. “This recognition is a testament to that success and to the dedication, creativity, and innovation of our program’s faculty, staff, and students. It’s a proud moment for all of us as we continue setting the standard for excellence in design education and making a positive impact in the industry.”

John Lawler, associate professor and graphic design area coordinator, expresses pride in the USM program.

“We are incredibly proud of our graphic design program here at Southern Miss,” said Lawler. “As faculty, we strive to foster a culture that encourages exploration of both form and function throughout all levels of the program. Our students really embrace the rigor of the program with a sense of pride and a determination to be the best. Ultimately, the students are who make this program successful. I’m continuously amazed by the level of professionalism and talent they display on a daily basis.”

What makes the program stand out? At the core of its BFA curriculum lies a dedication to teaching visual literacy; developing conceptual, aesthetic, and visual skills; and becoming proficient with creative problem-solving. But education at Southern Miss goes beyond the classroom. It offers experiential learning opportunities, where students get to work on real-world projects and can join one of its two student-led agencies: Rise Creative and SPVA Design and Marketing team.

From participating in design conferences to portfolio reviews and competitions, students are not just attending USM to learn, but to actively participate in shaping their own future in design.

Learn more about the USM Art and Design program.

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