How to Become a Graphic Designer in North Dakota?

What is a Graphic Designer?

Graphic designers are artists who are known for using their strong creativity and flair for technology. They create everything from logos, signs, and animations to send a message in the best way possible. The mix of art, science and technology is a welcome change from the outdated misconception that artists usually don’t have access to well-paying jobs. The boom in online businesses allows for many graphic designers to work wherever they want. The opportunities are endless, so how do you become a graphic designer? Where do you start?

Requirements to Become a Graphic Designer in North Dakota

The traditional way to get into graphic design is to get a degree by attending an accredited college or university in a graphic design program. Accredited programs are available to be found through the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD). They also have affiliations with The Professional Association for Design (AIGA).

Graphic Design Schools and Programs in North Dakota

The University of North Dakota, (UND) Grand Forks

UND offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a major in graphic design. Along with various classes, there are also internships offered within the program for real-life experience. The school cites an average of $77,000 as the median pay for web developers in the United States. A 13% increase in jobs for web developers is being hailed as a faster-than-average growth for this industry. Courses at UND include advertising and art direction. Time is spent specifically on illustration, production design, typesetting, and web design. The University of North Dakota has been rated the #1 in Best Graphic Design Colleges & Universities in North Dakota.

University of Jamestown, Jamestown

The University of Jamestown is a private, not-for-profit university in a Christian community. With a Bachelor of Arts or Science available, you can start your graphic design career. With minors available in game design, computer science and information technology. The University of Jamestown advertises a 99% rate of placement with internships.

Their website states that as a Graphic Design for E-Commerce, you’ll develop skills in areas of visual art and communication. Marketing and computer technology also play a significant role in their course curriculum. The program endorses a unique way to conceptualize design, the use of photographs and images as statement pieces. This is all while using the newest apps and computer programs for design. An understanding of marketing and communication are also pillars of the E-commerce program. Keep in mind, however, that the University of Jamestown is not accredited by NASAD.

North Dakota State University (NSDU), Fargo

Located in Fargo, NSDU offers a variety of pathways to a bachelor’s degree in arts. All degrees are four-year courses on campus. NSDU offers a bachelor’s degree in arts, Science or Fine Arts. The majors include visual art, interior design, and art education. NSDU states that its program emphasizes areas that support students going into careers in industries such as graphic design, illustration, and art education. The comfortable design of Renaissance Hall houses the Visual Arts department. It includes a new digital media lab with access to a second digital media studio. The lab is updated, and now graphic design majors have access to tech tools, including 3D printing, CNC, and virtual reality facilities.

Minot State University, Minot

Minot State University has programs including a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts with graphic design options. They also offer a Bachelor of Science in multimedia studies. Per their website, studying art is a meaningful and creative experience. During which you will build confidence with technique, concept, design, and aesthetic judgment.” Minot advertises small class sizes, charming classrooms and quality professors. They also offer personal studio spaces, citing the need for everyone to have their own creative space. Minot State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org). They are a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Yet Minot State is not affiliated with NASAD.

Rasmussen University, Fargo – Fully Online

Rasmussen University is offering a fully online Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design. They are a for-profit university and have an Animation and Graphics Specialization. While programming is offered entirely online, they do have a Fargo satellite campus. They advertise a graphic design degree that uses skills that have been requested by those within the industry. The program, as it is online, has been called more flexible for everyday living by Rasmussen.

How to pick a program for Graphic Design that’s right for you?

While there are many things affecting your decision to apply for any program, there are several things you should consider:

  • Cost of the program
  • NASAD affiliation
  • Ability to specialize
  • Online vs. in-person
  • Private vs. Public

How much does a Graphic Designer make in North Dakota?

Salary ranges can vary depending on the company you’re working with, your experience, your education level, and your specialization. The average Graphic Designer salary in North Dakota is $53,685 as of April 2022. However, the range falls between $47,844 and $61,357.

Finding Graphic Design Work in North Dakota

Depending on your qualifications, there are many routes you could take when getting work once you finish your degree. Due to the ebb and flow of opportunities, you might want to see what works best for you and your lifestyle.

What jobs are currently open in North Dakota?

– Graphic Designer, Lucit, In-office, Bismarck, ND $25,400 – $44,800/yea

– Designer, Pearson, In-Office, Bismarck, ND, $50,000/year

– Graphic Designer, In-Office, Fargo, ND, $33,400 – $42,400/year

– Graphic Designer, In-Office, RE/MAX Champions Realty Inc., $16-20/hour

Do you see yourself in exciting roles like these? Does the thought of getting to be creative and working with technology get you moving? Apply to a school near you to get the ball rolling and see what exciting challenges await you. You may not need the education, but it certainly helps. In the long run, it is worth the investment of time and money.