Graphic Arts | South Hills School of Business & Technology

Graphic Arts

Two-Year Associate in Specialized Technology (AST) Degree Program
Available at the State College Main Campus

The South Hills Graphic Arts program prepares you for a lifelong career communicating visually—through a variety of media, including: illustration, print, web, video, interactive, and social.

You’ll begin designing from day one. Using well-known software and resources, the Graphic Arts faculty will train you in typography, web design, logo design and corporate identity, packaging, publication design, advertising design, collateral design, and color theory, among newly emerging areas.

You’ll study the history of design, learning from the past while stepping into the future. A small class size and a practical curriculum ensure we will tap into your true potential and bring out your creative best!


The Graphic Arts program at South Hills is taught by faculty who are seasoned educators and working professional designers with experience in every facet of the field. Our teachers have designed web sites, publications, packaging, annual reports, advertising campaigns, corporate identities, CD packaging, and outdoor advertising. They have also worked as professional copywriters, art directors, and videographers.

At the end of the program, you will graduate with a versatile, well-rounded print portfolio and web site, ready to “hit the ground running” as you launch your career in the field of graphic arts.

To succeed in this program, you must be self-motivated, driven, creative, and receptive to constructive feedback, with a strong work ethic.

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Program Info Sheet

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Complete Course List

Graphic Arts Course List

Graphic Arts Course List for 2019-20

This program information appears in the 2019-20 school catalog. Click here for all course descriptions.

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours
First TermGE183Business English I4.060
GA116Color Theory2.536
GA133Electronic Design4.060
GA130Fundamentals of Design4.060
GA120Fundamentals of Drawing3.060
PD110Professional Development2.024
Second TermGE231Art History for the Graphic Designer5.060
GE184Business English II4.060
GA128Collateral Design3.560
GA124Introduction to Computer Graphics (Photoshop)4.060
GE213Oral Business Communications2.024
Third TermGA230Advertising Design3.560
GE233Business Writing3.560
GA225Computer Graphics - Illustrator4.060
GA217Concept Development2.536
GA121Graphic Design Studio I3.560
CP134Web Site Design4.060
Fourth TermGE234Geometry for Design3.036
GE178Human Relations in the Workplace2.536
CD207Job Search Skills2.024
GA220Packaging Design3.560
GA222Publication Design3.560
GA235Social Media and Marketing for Designers4.060
IT218Web Site Design II4.060
Fifth TermGA236Advanced Web Site Design (Motion Graphics)4.060
GA228Digital Pre-Press3.560
* Elective3.548
GA219Graphic Design Studio II3.560
GA221Print Portfolio3.560
GA227Typography - Expressive & Experimental3.048
Fifth Term Elective Choices* GA231Digital Photography3.548
* GA233Video Production and Editing3.548
Sixth TermCD106Career Preparation0.510
GA232Freelance Business Development2.021
GA234Graphic Arts Internship11.0330
119.5 Credits1,993 Clock Hours

Careers in Graphic Arts

The world of graphic arts is continually evolving in step with technology. Career possibilities are expanding with advances in web site design, print-on-demand and digital offset printing, interactive and social media design, etc. Current job titles include:

Each student completes a summer-long internship before graduation, providing real world experience. We have placed interns throughout Centre, Blair, Huntingdon, and Clinton Counties at locations including:

South Hills Graphic Arts graduates are employed from Madison Avenue in New York City to Key West, Florida. Our graduates are designing web sites, magazines, yearbooks, maps, marketing materials, vehicle graphics, imprinted apparel, and advertising campaigns, and managing pre- and post-press printing. In addition to successful freelance careers, some of the firms employing our graduates include:

Meet the Faculty

Program Advisory Committee

State College Main Campus
Member NameJob TitleCompany
Jennifer NortonAssistant DirectorPenn State Press
Steve KressOwnerSteve Kress Design
Chip MockOwnerMock Creations
Jim Lukens-GableArt DirectorPenn State Multimedia and Print Center
Dennis ManeySenior Graphic DesignerPenn State College of Health and Human Development
Doug IrwinGraphic DesignerPenn State Housing and Food Services
Tiara SnareSenior Graphic DesignerThe Barash Group
Mark Dello StrittoOwner/Senior Art DirectorLoaded Creative
Jorge JovelOwnerBlack Sheep Media
Ryan CherryOwner/FreelancerGrizzly Design Company

Ready to enroll in the Graphic Arts program?

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