ANTHONY NARDO '20
TYLER HANDA '23
MADELEINE LYASH '21
JIA BERNSTEIN '21
KELLY PHAN '22
Graphic designers are visual storytellers. They engage and communicate through logos and brand identities, apps and websites, publications and product packaging, wayfinding and signage, ads and commercials.
Well-designed graphics can stand in for a thousand words, sharing meaning and emotion with just a glance. At Pennsylvania College of Art & Design, you’ll not only learn to be an effective designer, but also a bold, innovative creator, thinker, and problem solver. By the time you graduate, you’ll feel empowered to take ownership of your ideas and your creations as you share them with the world.
Ranked 7th in Graphic Design Programs in Pennsylvania in 2022
Ranked 16th in "Best Colleges for Design in America" in 2022
Ranked 30th in Graphic Design Schools in 2021
Why Graphic Design at PCA&D?
One-on-one instruction is our hallmark. With faculty guidance and inspiration, you’ll tackle real-world projects with immediate impact, building your portfolio to launch your career. You’ll learn in the best small city to live in the U.S., in a vibrant arts-rich environment with more than 125 galleries and creative spaces.
Our students are regularly named GD Students to Watch and win national GDUSA design competitions. All coursework incorporates some form of portfolio review and/or critique with a faculty of professional, working designers to prepare you for receiving feedback in career settings and learning how to implement suggested improvements. Each year your faculty assesses the curriculum to make sure you’ll learn only the most relevant skills and software you’ll need to succeed after graduation.
Customize your program
PCA&D students have the opportunity to explore multiple interests by incorporating a minor or certificate into their major studies. Expanding your skill sets to cross disciplines will make you more appealing to future employers and broaden your potential career path.
Tyler Handa ’23
internships & careers
Where could your creative life take you?
Emily Phillips ’19
Internships are a required element of the Graphic Design program, often completed during the summer before the senior year. Leave your internship with connections to lifelong mentors or even a pre-graduation job offer. To name a few recent placements: Patagonia, Martha Stewart Omnimedia, and Armstrong World Industries.
As an intern, you could create interactive (web, digital, social) and mixed reality (Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, etc.) experiences for clients such as National Geographic, Oxygen, CBS, Disney Nickelodeon, FX, and History Channel. Students of any level have the opportunity to complete a paid internship on campus with The Agency. Take on projects for the College as well as those for community non-profit organizations and local start-up businesses with small budgets.
These real-world experiences in and out of the classroom will build skill sets allowing you to land positions in:
- Packaging and product design
- Government agencies
- Multimedia companies
- Healthcare institutions
- Film studios
- Industrial design firms
- Marketing and public relations departments
- Advertising agencies
- Printing companies
- Architectural firms
- And many, MANY more…
Your adaptability will also prepare you for emerging fields and jobs that don’t exist yet as user experience and interface design continues to evolve.
where are Alumni now?
Graphic Design graduates pursue careers in a variety of fields. Click below to explore recent stories from the program.
If you want to keep up with 2020 graduate Dyneisha Gross, get yourself organized and buckle up: It’s going to be a quick takeoff and a busy, busy agenda. Gross earned her BFA in Graphic Design, magna cum laude, in 2020, and has landed at the Washington, D.C., office of
A faculty of working designers
As experienced working professionals with strong ties to resources and opportunities in the field, your faculty assign competitive, real-world projects to enhance your portfolio with professional work well before you graduate.
Maria Hostetter ’16, Department Chair
Maria earned a diploma in Communication Art and Graphic Design from the Pennsylvania School of Art and Design in 1993, studied Art Education at Millersville University, then returned to PCA&D to earn her BFA in Graphic Design in 2016. Since then, she’s guided students, first as a member of the College’s continuing education programming and then as a member of the Graphic Design faculty.
Austin Taylor ’24
HOW TO Apply
Make your creative life, a way of life
While you’re still deciding on a school, go ahead and start an application, it’s free! Submitting an application isn’t a commitment to PCA&D but it helps us get to know you better. Or you can start by submitting 8-10 pieces of your art to help us assess your potential.
Whether you’re just starting to learn about PCA&D or ready to submit an application, connect with us. We offer a range of ways to visit, from on-campus visits to online info sessions and 1-on-1s with an admissions counselor.