In 2012 and 2013, I worked with the Dishman Art Museum to host a graphic design student showcase. At the time of these shows, the department had many students earning a BS in Graphic Design, which is a liberal arts degree that does not require a thesis project. In order to allow these students an opportunity to celebrate their capstone projects, I worked to host a one night event where friends, family, the local community, and design professionals were invited to celebrate their work. Each event had local keynote speeches such as Ron Sullivan, an esteemed LU Art alum with experience at the Richard’s Group in Dallas, TX before starting his own successful advertising agency.
The main goal of the graphic design showcase was to allow students who did not create a thesis project an opportunity to display their work in the Dishman Art Museum. This presented a challenge as there was no time to schedule a full show. This temporary display was a one night only event that encouraged visitors to come and discuss the work with the students directly. Local designers came and often provided portfolio critiques. This also provided a great networking opportunity that landed job opportunities for multiple students after the showcase. Each time the event was hosted over 150 guests attended. After a curriculum redesign in 2013/2014, we found that most students were studying under the BFA program and completing thesis projects, thus the event was discontinued.