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Innovation: Animation Across Colleges


July 9, 2021 —  Northern Kentucky University continues its commitment to developing talent and innovation in the region by creating a new Animation degree track collaborating across colleges, as well as renaming of Media Informatics to 3D Digital Design and Visual Effects to meet the industry’s changing demands.

In the College of Arts and Sciences, the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Animation prepares students to create compelling visuals using modern technologies. Housed in NKU’s School of the Arts (SOTA), the program teaches students how to proficiently draw, and develop visual storytelling using state of the art digital tools to launch a life of creativity in the field of animation.

The College of Informatics renamed its Media Informatics program to better align with changing workforce needs and industry opportunities. 3D Digital Design and Visual Effects prepares students for successful careers in creative and technical industries—from texturing, lighting and rigging to game art and digital sculpting.

“Our program has grown rapidly in its first decade of existence,” said Stephen Yungbluth, Chair of the Communication Department. “The new name stays true to what we know: continuously evolving to keep pace with technology changes and industry needs.”

With the new Arts and Sciences’ Animation program, SOTA unveiled a hybrid animation studio space equipped with 21 high performance computers, and a variety of digital pen tool displays.

“The multi-media emergence has created opportunities for designers and artists like never before,” said Brad McCombs, Head of NKU’s Visual Arts program. “NKU is known for its digitally-based innovation with media and techniques.”

Both the Visual Arts and the 3D Digital Design and Visual Effects programs are collaborating to prepare students in the emerging and exciting field of animation. The School of the Arts’ Visual Arts Program prepares students to be technically agile, creative trailblazers in the fields of art and design, and in their careers. The College of Informatics and 3D Digital Design & VFX area is known for its technological innovation with 21st century media and techniques that are digitally based.

By leveraging the expertise across NKU, the university has built an engaging Animation curriculum that will prepare students for exciting careers where they can bring new worlds and characters to life through animation.

Visit NKU’s College of Arts and Sciences and College of Informatics websites for more information on their programs and offerings.

About NKU: Founded in 1968, NKU is an entrepreneurial state university of over 16,000 students served by more than 2,000 faculty and staff on a thriving suburban campus nestled between Highland Heights, Kentucky and bustling downtown Cincinnati. We are a regionally engaged university committed to empowering our students to have fulfilling careers and meaningful lives. While we are one of the fastest-growing universities in Kentucky, our professors still know our students' names. For more information, visit