Art and Design
Shippensburg University offers a bachelor of arts (B.A.) degree in art and a B.A. in art education, K-12.
Students in the regular B.A. program can chose concentrations in ceramics, graphic design, drawing, painting, art history, and sculpture. Art majors may also complete an interdisciplinary concentration in graphic design with the departments of Art and Design and Computer Science, or graduate with a certificate in graphic design after completing the Department of Art and Design's concentration of six graphic design courses. Students may also elect a junior-year option to study at the Art Institute (Ai) or attend the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT).
How do I prepare to be an art major?
Draw and read. Drawing is the most important skill of all artists, regardless of their chosen medium. Drawing allows the artist to give immediate form to ideas and to further develop those ideas rather quickly. Read. Read everything you can about art, and especially contemporary art. An informed artist will have a deeper understanding of the creative process, and will be better prepared to create art or designs of significance.
Are there additional admission requirements?
Students interested in becoming an Art or Art Education Major must complete an Admission Portfolio Requirement. For information and an introduction the portfolio and the application process, please follow the link below.
submit your portfolio online
What careers can be found in art?
Skilled artists find job options in virtually every field where goods or services are present. You've known or heard about some occupations in art: art education, graphic designer, gallery director, and illustrator. But a skilled artist can also find employment as a web designer, videographer, animator, ceramicist, technical illustrator, product designer, make-up artist, lighting designer, special effects artist and the list goes on.
For the artist producing works of fine arts, practicing his or her craft is of first and foremost importance. Fine artists too find art-related positions which complement their studio production. Some fine artists pursue graduate programs in art and then a position as a university art professor, an art critic, a conservator or restorer, an art therapist, or another art occupation. Other fine artists continue to make their artwork, exhibit it in galleries, museums, in other types of exhibitions, and may apply for grant funding.
What is the job outlook?
Very good, if you are prepared. Artists are in constant demand for their creativity, certification in art, and manual skills. Artists who are skilled, productive, and inventive will find jobs in, or related to, their field of study. More recently, computer skills have increased the career options for artists. Adaptability and versatility are two very important qualities to beginning a successful career in art.
Are there internship opportunities?
Internships are vital to the success of an art major. They help students gain valuable experience they need to land an entry-level position. The department maintains a current file of internship positions, and faculty work closely with each student to locate a suitable placement.
Recent interns have served with such organizations as the Pennsylvania Preservation Commission, Pennsylvania State Museum, Washington County Museum of Fine Arts (Hagerstown, Md.), Ingersoll-Rand Co., Beidel Printing House, and Well Vissor, Inc. (Philadelphia).
What kinds of courses will I take?
All art majors take several foundation courses to develop manual skills and to acquire conceptual knowledge about visual art. The foundation courses are Basic Drawing, Drawing II, Color and Two Dimensional Design, Three Dimensional Design, and Art Appreciation. Additionally, students are required to take two art history courses, which together cover art from the Gothic period to the contemporary Postmodern art forms. Following the required art courses, you may elect courses in studio art and in art history, which are of personal interest. Studio areas include: computer design, ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking, and sculpture to name a few. Some art majors pursue a minor as part of their degree. Art education students take education courses, in addition to the foundation art studio courses.
What student organizations exist in the field?
Experience is vital to securing an entry-level position. Student organizations provide such experience. All students are welcome to participate in the Student Art League, which is involved in a variety of art related activities. The Visivo group produces an annual arts magazine, where students learn all aspects of magazine production. Art education students are involved in the Pennsylvania Art Education Association (PAEA).
Why study art at Shippensburg?
Our graphic design program is fitted with labs containing the latest technology. New courses in graphic design can enhance students' employment potential. Students take courses in the Department of Computer Science in programming, as part of the computer graphic concentration in the Art & Design Department.
The Art & Design Department has cooperative agreements with the Art Institute (Ai), with eight locations nationwide, and the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York. By choosing to spend your junior year at one of these institutes, you can concentrate on photography/multimedia, visual communication, computer animation/multimedia, and interior, graphic, industrial, fashion, advertising, textiles/surface, or accessories design.
All of our faculty have received national recognition for their studio art. Professors have Master of Fine Art degrees, the terminal studio art degree, or a Ph.D. in art history or art education.
The art department also boasts its own gallery where nine major exhibits are presented annually. Art majors have the opportunity to visit art museums and art galleries in New York City and Washington, D.C., on a regular basis. Study abroad courses are also offered by the art faculty. These include a yearly trip to a major European city during Spring Break.
Art studios are furnished and maintained with the finest equipment and tools. Class sizes are among the smallest you'll find anywhere, which translates into more individualized instruction. But see for yourself, visit a class or come to visit the department for a day. Ask questions. We're eager to help you.
Where can I get more information about art at Shippensburg?
Department of Art & Design
Huber Art Center 209
1871 Old Main Drive
Shippensburg, PA 17257-2299