DSVC National Student Show and Conference 14

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April 18, 2018


This past weekend, 24 Graphic Design students from the Creative Collective, our student design organization, traveled to Dallas to attend DSVC’s National Student Show (NSSC) and Conference in Dallas, Texas. Our students worked hard fundraising and organizing for the event and preparing work for submission into the juried exhibition. The DSVC NSSC, is the largest of its kind and truly a once in a lifetime experience for students. To quote Asst. Professor Cotton:


 “Having personally sat in on numerous breakout sessions through the years and I have been personally inspired by such greats as Wayne Geyer, and Jeff Barfoot. The conference has always done an amazing job of showing students and professors alike what is happening in the design world, whether with the studio tours exposing many students to the inside of a design environment for the first time or the keynote speakers laying down earth shattering design wisdom.

In my experience this conference does those things second to none, but as a student it did something more for me. Every year in the spring semester I begin to gear up the excitement in my classrooms for this event, trying to galvanize my students behind a singular goal: Get To Dallas. This has been my goal since before I was teaching. As a student leader in the university design club it became our focus every year. It gave us a common goal, a reason to be around each other, to put up with each other. What was a mere classroom acquaintance at the beginning became a trusted friend. You began to grow together as designers, sharing your skills, resources, and alcohol. Before long instead of a design club we had a community of late night owls and x-acto swordsmen whose strive for perfectionism and caffeine could not be rivaled. This community still binds many of us together to this day.”


Our students left Wednesday morning in order to partake in the studio tours which were on the first day of activities on Thursday. The studio tours allowed students to directly interact with active professionals in their field and gain a better understanding of their future work environment. The following two days were packed with keynote speakers who dropped great words of wisdom about many aspects of design and life as a creative. Between speakers, students were able to attend breakout sessions from Dallas area professionals and professionals from across the country that covered a wide range of topics such as handlettering and poster activism to freelancing and designing for a museum. The NSSC concluded with an awards gala and after-party which allowed students the opportunity to screen print their own posters in a fun and lively setting.

This year three talented students from our program were accepted into the exhibition marking the first time in program history that our students have been represented in this prestigious national show which had close to 2000 entries from across the country.

Asst. Professor Jacob C. Cotton also served this year on a panel of blind jurors made of nationally recognized educators from around the country to select session speakers for the education forum which covered two days of topics on how to better design education. The forum saw professors and psychologist from 5 different states present their research on topics ranging from sports psychology to community building and more.   

For more information about the conference please visit: www.nationalstudentshow.com


Stay updated on what the Art + Design students are up to by following SMAD and Creative Collective on social media!






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