I love to teach graphic design. I feel as though I am genuinely working on the future of the discipline in the classroom. I set high standards and expectations for all of my students because I believe, as Goethe said, “treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them to become what they are capable of being.” My students and I work together to set and then achieve goals that challenge them. I strive to stretch them and keep their focus on high-caliber outcomes.

I work to prepare my students for the real-world of graphic design while concurrently engaging them in theoretical explorations. To do this, I start by creating an interactive learning environment where collaboration, discussion and discourse are vital components. I believe in coursework that is rooted in foundational philosophies and then integrates modern techniques to solve design issues. I draw on examples from my nine years of professional exposure to pose design questions and offer approaches. I bring industry professionals into the classroom for critiques and evaluations of projects.

I have found it to be especially important to engage each student on his or her own terms. To do this, I have individualized discussions with each student about their interests and goals. I’ve found this empowers the student to speak more openly during critiques. It also seems to make them more accountable when responding to feedback. This is part of what I do to help each student discover, or at least develop, their own voice in their work.

I sincerely enjoy my roll as a graphic design educator and the 1,528 students I have educated. I am continually learning new methods of teaching but my goal is to use my academic, professional and creative background as a basis to provide the best possible learning environment. From the feedback I have received from the students I have graduated, I have been very successful at strengthening their design potential to a level they didn’t know they were previously capable of achieving.