Major & Minor


The study of design prepares individuals to use artistic techniques to effectively communicate ideas and information to business and consumer audiences via illustrations and other forms of digital or printed media.

Books artfully set up

About the Design Major

Visual communication and literacy have never been more important than they are today, and opportunities for graduates with a design degree are more promising than ever. Designers develop and create tailored visual ideas in art to communicate a brand’s message, ideas, or mission, such as brochures, games, websites, and logos.

At Southern Virginia University, students in the design program engage in challenging artistic experiences to become literate, articulate artists with both breadth and depth of artistic experience. Students are able to tailor their education to fit their desired career paths in design, such as interior, industrial, graphic, game, and sport. Design majors learn basic design principles, color theory, critical thinking, and artistic techniques, and studying in a liberal arts setting cultivates critical thinking, problem solving, and the ability to see and understand different perspectives.

Learning Outcomes

What you’ll learn in the Design major:

  1. Develop critical thinking and problem solving skills
  2. Learn how to communicate brand messaging through design
  3. Knowledge of design in desired career field
  4. Thorough knowledge of design principles

Career Opportunities

There is a wide array of potential careers with a Design degree, including jobs in design, animation, arts, marketing, and more depending on your personal and professional goals.

  • Interior Designer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Animator
  • Sport Branding Designer

Getting Started in the Design Major

Follow these simple steps below to get a head start in the
Design Major today.


Begin by taking Viscom I (ART 121) in your first year

Contact Your Advisor

Get in touch with New tab, Opens Bio of: Professor Jacob Ricks to discuss your interests and goals


Turn in a completed PDFDeclare Major Form to the Registrar’s Office

Questions? Contact the Registrar at

Design Faculty

Professor Jacob Ricks

Jacob Ricks

Assistant Professor of Art; Art & Design Program Coordinator

Marie Withers

Marie Withers

Visiting Assistant Professor of Art & Design

“Designers are incredibly important to almost every career and work field, and cover a very broad area. And because of that, you can tailor your education to whatever field interests you, be it games, sports, fashion, or entertainment. The options are almost limitless in design.”

—Jacob Ricks, Assistant Professor of Art; Art & Design Program Coordinator