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Should You Go To College For Graphic Design?

Should You Go To College For Graphic Design Do You Need a Degree to Become a Graphic Designer and be successful? Should you go to college for Graphic Design or learn Graphic Design on your own?

This is probably the question you all have asked the most in the comments.

Is graphic design school the right choice?

Can I get a job in the graphic design industry without going to college and getting a bachelors degree?

Do they care about my education or just my portfolio?

Do I really need to go to college to learn graphic design?

In this video I go deep on the reasons why you may want or need to go to college as a graphic designer, why you should consider not going to college as a graphic designer, and how whether you get a degree or not, it may not guarantee you a job in the graphic design industry.

One of the most important things I cover is that you need to examine your reasons for going to college for a graphic design degree. If it is to get a job upon graduation and you’re worried that job descriptions will filter you from getting a job if you don’t, then maybe a degree in design is not the answer. Maybe you get a degree from your college in a related field while learning graphic design on your own.

A degree in marketing, communications, fine art, animation, computer science or business will be just as impressive or more so to anyone hiring you if you have strong graphic design portfolio.

If your social/economic status dictates that you don’t have the resources to learn graphic design on your own, then college is a great opportunity for you to get access to information and resources you may not have other wise.

Going to college is also a great opportunity to move away from your current location if you don’t feel it values design or provides job opportunities, and work/live in the place you want to have your career in over the next 10-20 years.

Getting a degree in graphic design and putting in applications is not necessarily going to land you a job and who you interview with and how you got the interview in the first place makes a difference.

If you get called into an interview based on them finding your portfolio or because your personal brand or some other work you did, the degree is not going to matter. If you were referred by someone already in the company, the degree is not going to matter.

But if you “cold call” a company by just submitting an application and resume online or to HR then you are going to be filtered and may never get to show them your portfolio. You always want to be hired based on your portfolio. If you are hired on something other than your portfolio your experiences are not going to be ideal, period.’

Let’s talk about the cost of a Degree in Graphic Design or in General for a moment. Even if you go to community college you are spending between $3000,-$6000 if you’re lucky. A traditional 4 year degree will cost you between $20,000-$30,000.

Starting a career with this kind of crushing debt and little means to pay it back means you will have very little leverage in negotiating your salary. If you thought a degree gave you leverage, it really means you are walking in with debt you are desperate to pay off, which means you likely can’t afford to turn down and offer. This cripples you and likely means you will be paid less than you’re worth.

But I will cover why design is undervalued in another video. My point is that is a lot of investment to find yourself in that situation.

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