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nku visual communication program

June 17, 2022 - Northern Kentucky University’s Visual Communication Design program is the best graphic design program in Kentucky, according to new rankings released by Animation Career Review

The latest rankings show NKU back in the top spot for the first time since 2020, up from No. 3 in the 2021 rankings. Rounding out the top five for the 2022 rankings are Western Kentucky University, University of Louisville, Murray State University and Kentucky Wesleyan College. 

“NKU Visual Communication Design is honored to be ranked as the No. 1 Graphic Design program in the state,” Brad McCombs, head of the NKU Art & Design program, said. “Our program advances the power of creativity and artistic excellence to communicate information and ideas. Our students are empowered to excel in their education and in life, to conduct scholarly research in the arts and design process to enrich our communities. The NKU campus, near downtown Cincinnati, allows our curriculum to engage students to world-class design firms, studios, cultural assets and internship opportunities to launch their creative careers. We celebrate this award that highlights the phenomenal work of our Art & Design faculty, staff, and students.” 

Animation Career Review, which has been publishing graphic design rankings since 2015, used six different categorical measures to determine its rankings: academic reputation, employment data, admission selectivity, depth and breadth of the program, value as it relates to tuition and indebtness, and graduation rate. Click here for more information on the rankings criteria. 

More from the Animation Career Review

“Northern Kentucky University’s College of Arts and Sciences houses the School of the Arts (SOTA), which has a Visual Communication Design (VCD) Track within SOTA’s BA and BFA Programs. Both pathways consist of foundation courses and a variety of creative projects. SOTA students have access to state-of-the-art facilities in the Northern Kentucky University (NKU) Fine Arts Center, as well as workshops, seminars and career development resources.” 

To learn more about the Visual Communication Design program at Northern Kentucky University, click here.

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