Maryland Institute College of Art

About the Graphic Design MFA at MICA

Selected from an international pool of applicants, students in MICA’s Graphic Design MFA program include experienced designers who are seeking to reinvigorate their work as well as professionals and advanced students from related disciplines, such as digital media, photography, journalism, and the fine arts. GD MFA students pursue advanced studio work in graphic design as well as courses in the history and theory of art, design, and culture. Students work in print, animation, web design, product development, environmental design, and other media. Courses dedicated to the help students learn to use writing as a powerful and expressive communication tool. They receive professional development experience through MICA’s Teaching Internship program and through fellowships with the Center for Design Thinking and the Center for Design Practice.

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From the Blog

MICA Designers Win Breda Poster Competition

Katrina Keane and Shiva Nallaperumal, winners, Breda Poster Competition

Katrina Keane and Shiva Nallaperumal, winners, Breda Poster Competition

Designers in MICA’s GD MFA Studio II created posters for an international competition held in Breda, The Netherlands, in connection with the city’s Graphic Design Festival. 2,100 designers competed from 69 countries. Out of 50 winners, two are from MICA’s Graphic Design MFA program: Katrina Keane and Shiva Nallaperumal.

Some designers chose to comment on global issues such as human trafficking, income inequality, and privacy, while others focused on topics from within the world of visual communication and media, such as body image and the economics of white space. See more MICA student entries!

MICA Designers Win Big in Gates Competition

Records for Life Competition Entry, screen designs

Records for Life Competition Entry, screen designs

An outstanding team of MICA MFA designers (Amanda Buck, Nate Gulledge, Sally Maier, Chen Yu) placed in the Grand Prize top-tier of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Records for Life Competition. The Records for Life contest challenged the global community to re-design the health record in order to better meet the needs of providers and caregivers, with a focus on immunization information.

, a Gates Foundation blog linked below, includes more details, but in a nutshell there were over 300 submissions from 41 countries. The top 40 semifinalists (we had two) were tested by focus groups for their potential and narrowed to 10, which were then judged by, among others, Melinda Gates, Co-Founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Margaret Chan, Director General of the World Health Organization; Robert Fabricant, Vice President of Creative for Frog Design; and Jocelyn Wyatt, Co-Lead and Executive Director, The $10,000 award was announced at the culmination and finale of the international Interaction Design Association conference in Amsterdam.

A second GD MFA team (Alex Jacque, Iris Sprague, Wenjie Lu, and Yushi Luo) placed in the top forty entries. All entries in the top forty were user-tested by the Gates Foundation.

The project was led by Jennifer Cole Phillips, Director, Graphic Design MFA Program, with guest advisors Islam Elsedoudi, IDEO; Doug Storey and Manish Arora, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; and Lee Davis, MASD.

Records for Life competition entry

Records for Life competition entry

Type on Screen

GD MFA students and faculty have published a series of books about design in partnership with Princeton Architectural Press. Our latest title, Type on Screen, is now available for purchase on Amazon. The book was written, designed, and produced by GD MFA students and faculty.


GD MFA Thesis Projects