Graphic Arts – South Hills School of Business & Technology

Graphic Arts

Two-Year Associate in Specialized Technology (AST) Degree Program
Available in State College

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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"The Graphic Arts program is an intensive, project-driven program that includes hands-on training in both print and web disciplines. The students hit the ground running in a fast-paced environment. We challenge our students to be creative, to develop their concepts, to design to the client/project."

Ray Liddick Jr., GA Program Coordinator / Instructor at the State College Main Campus

Complete Course List

Graphic Arts Course List

Graphic Arts Course List for 2018-19

This program information appears in the 2018-19 school catalog. Click here to download all course descriptions.

TermCourse #Course NameCreditsClock Hours 
First TermGA130Fundamentals of Design4.060
GA131Electronic Design I4.060
GA120Fundamentals of Drawing3.060
GA116Color Theory2.536
GE183Business English I4.060
PD110Professional Development2.024
First Term Totals:19.5300
Second TermGA126Typography3.560
GA114Analysis of Form & Space3.060
GA132Electronic Design II4.060
GA124Introduction to Computer Graphics (Photoshop)4.060
GE184Business English II4.060
Second Term Totals:18.5300
Third TermGA121Graphic Design Studio I3.560
GA128Collateral Design3.560
GA225Computer Graphics - Illustrator4.060
GA129Media and Design Study4.060
GE233Business Writing3.560
Third Term Totals:18.5300
Fourth TermGE231Art History for the Graphic Designer5.060
GA235Social Media and Marketing for Designers4.060
GA229Typography as Design3.560
GA230Advertising Design3.560
GE213Oral Business Communications2.024
CP134Web Site Design4.060
Fourth Term Totals:22.0324
Fifth TermGA227Typography - Expressive & Experimental3.048
GA217Concept Development2.536
IT218Web Site Design II4.060
GA228Digital Pre-Press3.560
GA222Publication Design3.560
GE178Human Relations in the Workplace2.536
GE234Geometry for Design3.036
Fifth Term Totals:22336
Sixth TermGA236Advanced Web Site Design (Motion Graphics)4.060
GA220Packaging Design3.560
GA219Graphic Design Studio II3.560
GA221Print Portfolio3.560
CD207Job Search Skills2.024
Sixth Term Totals:20312
Elective ChoicesGA231Digital Photography3.548
GA233Video Production and Editing3.548
Seventh TermGA234Graphic Arts Internship11.0330
CD200Career Preparation0.510
GA232Freelance Business Development2.021
Seventh Term Totals:13.5361

Graduate Spotlight

"My South Hills education prepared me for success in my career because it gave me a more hands-on approach for an education that is taught by experienced instructors that have worked in the community and knew what was needed to achieve such success. The one-on-one interaction with the staff pushed me to be the best I could be and give me the confidence that I can achieve my goals."

Tiara Lose Snare (Class of 2009), Creative Director, Barash Media

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:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Publication Designer
  • Web Designer
  • Multimedia Specialist
  • Newspaper Designer
  • Prepress Specialist
  • Production Artist
  • Art Director
  • Creative Director
  • Layout Artist
  • Graphic Artist

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

Ray Liddick Jr.

Program Coordinator / Instructor
State College Main Campus

Ray's Biography

Jim Colbert

State College Main Campus

Jim's Biography

Rick Gority

State College Main Campus

Rick's Biography

Luciano Sormani

Adjunct Instructor
State College Main Campus

Luciano's Biography
Luciano's "I Am South Hills" Video

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

For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please view the Graphic Arts Disclosures page on our website.