Dec 02, 2023  
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Art + Design

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Associate Professor: Gretchen Sinnett, Chairperson                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Professors: Haig J. Demarjian, Benjamin H. Gross, Richard A. Lewis, Mark J. Malloy, Kenneth J. Reker, John J. Volpacchio

Associate Professor: Brian Alves


Faculty Emeriti

Professors: Thomas Leary, Patricia Johnston, Francis C. Quimby, Margers Raudzens

Associate Professor: Elissa Ananian

  Programs Offered 


3-Dimensional Studio 
Art History 
Graphic Design 




2-Dimensional Art 
3-Dimensional Art 
Art History 
Graphic Design 
User Experience and Interface Design



Bachelor of Arts – Art

The undergraduate Art + Design major provides in-depth experience in design, photography, studio arts, and art history supported by the university’s broad liberal arts curriculum, which enables students to connect their artworks with the ideas and challenges that are shaping our society today. Art + Design courses encourage an appreciation of the social, cultural, ethnic, and environmental diversities and complexities of our community and the world.  Together faculty and students explore art and design from a range of perspectives, including personal expression, technical facility, ethical messaging, social change, and historical analysis.  

Art + Design majors develop their abilities to express ideas and concepts visually and verbally. They explore traditional artistic tools as well as the most recent technologies, while gaining in-depth knowledge of the history of art and design. They learn to look closely, think critically, and express themselves creatively, skills necessary in art and design and many other fields. Students study and create art and design from diverse aesthetic, historical, and socio-cultural perspectives. Foundation studio courses expose majors to a range of artistic media, while strengthening critique and problem-solving skills. Concentration-specific courses allow students to focus intensely on one of six disciplines. The art history curriculum expands students’ visual literacy and analysis skills. Majors in capstone courses build their portfolios and develop supporting documents such as resumes, artist statements, and cover letters for graduate school and employment applications as well as exhibition submissions. Graduates work in design firms, museums, advertising agencies, galleries, photography studios, printing shops, schools, and other creative fields, locally and nationally.

Salem State University is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

Admission to Art + Design

Students who wish to be admitted directly into the Art + Design major when applying to Salem State must submit a portfolio to as part of the admissions process. Portfolios should consist of 10-15 pieces of original art and design work that are made with a variety of media and demonstrate a range of skills. Written descriptions for each portfolio piece should include the title, date, medium, dimensions, and a short explanation of the purpose of the project. Applications will not be considered complete until all required credentials are submitted.

There are two methods that students already at Salem State can use to declare or change to a major in Art + Design. Current Salem State students can either submit a portfolio to or enroll in any Art + Design course and then get an instructor’s recommendation to join the major. It’s best to get an instructor’s referral near the end of the semester after a number of projects have been completed. Students then declare or change their major through Navigator. Whether a portfolio is submitted online or an instructor signs a referral form, students wishing to join the major need to notify the chairperson for final approval.


Graphic Design concentrators complete an internship as part of their coursework, and many students in other concentrations also choose to participate in internships while at Salem State. Internships provide students with professional experience while they earn their undergraduate degrees. ART 501 Internship in Art is a three-credit course that requires 100-120 hours of work at an internship location. Some internships provide a stipend or salary, while others are unpaid. Faculty members can often offer advice or leads on internship opportunities.  Faculty members meet with students pursuing internships to discuss their experiences and check in with their internship supervisors periodically throughout the semester.

Honors In Art

Senior Art + Design majors with a minimum average of 3.5 in the major may be invited by Art + Design faculty members to pursue ART 600H Honors in Art. Qualified Honors in Art students produce research or studio projects that exhibit substantial knowledge and creative achievement outside of the normal pattern of courses. Students must have the ability to work with a minimum of direction and supervision. Invited students must submit a proposal, supervised by a faculty member, for approval by the chairperson.

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