Jul 24, 2024  
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Art + Design

View Programs and Courses  



Professor: Benjamin H. Gross, Chairperson                                                                                                                                                                                                     

Professors: Haig J. Demarjian, Richard A. Lewis, Mark J. Malloy, Kenneth J. Reker

Associate Professors:  Brian Alves, Gretchen Sinnett


Faculty Emeriti

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

Associate Professor: Elissa Ananian

  Programs Offered 


Art History 
Graphic Design 
Studio Art & Photography  


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 graphic design, studio art, photography, and art history supported by the university’s broad liberal arts curriculum, which enables students to connect their artworks with the ideas and challenges 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 works 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 individual 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

Prospective students are not required to submit an admissions portfolio.  Instead Graphic Design and Studio Art & Photography concentrators will submit portfolios for review and evaluation after completing 21 credits in the major.

However, prospective students applying for the Harold T. and Alice M. McCarthy Memorial Scholarship must submit a portfolio to www.slideroom.com as part of the scholarship application 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.


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.