Life at the Lake: Crossroads of creativity

In graphics and digital, students have designs on success

By Teresa Richter

The Wright State-Lake Campus graphic and digital design programs are like the crossroads—where it all comes together—for so many students.

The programs strive to give students a stellar education that fosters innovative problem solving, interactive design development, and virtual solutions for comprehensive audiences.

Students pursue a rigorous curriculum of technological skill and foundational knowledge in design that enables them to be conceptual thinkers, visual communicators, and collaborative graphic and media design developers with exceptional software skills. Students outside of the graphic and digital design programs can explore two different graphic certificates that enhance the skills they have acquired in their business, fine arts, sciences, English, and marketing studies.

For a student who wishes to explore graphic design as a career, degree programs that apply to entry position production level positions include an Associate of Applied Business in Graphic Design and Multimedia, a Bachelor of Technical and Applied Studies for Graphic Design, and a bachelor’s degree in digital design. These programs will take the student from junior level to entry management level in two to three years.

There are some fabulous alumni stories as well as some outstanding current students who are creating amazing works. A story I love to share is about Esteban Benitez ’15, ’17, ’22 who pitched a project for a local company during his senior internship.

The CEO of the company informed me that my student, this intern, had just landed the company its first million-dollar account, with BMW. Needless to say, the CEO requested that I send them four more designers immediately. Today, this company still has a large team of designers from our program.

Benitez earned a management position as a senior designer in his second year with this company. During his years there, he designed recognizable trophies for NASCAR and Fortune 500 companies that were featured on TV and red carpet events.

Several students have worked in the field as design managers, then embarked on personal startup companies that have been sustainable businesses. Sarah Puthoff Smith ’22 is just such a success story. After being in the field as a managing designer, she launched her own wedding photography business.

Latosha Stone ’23, a recent distance learning graduate, has continued to enjoy success in the branded marketing world with her graphic design. Her notable achievements include being featured on Beyonce’s Black Parade list, and her apparel and artwork being featured in Zumiez, Hot Topic, Pop Tarts, Spencer’s, HBO’s Betty, DC Comics, and galleries across the United States.

Why Choose Graphic Design at Wright State?

The Bachelor of Technical and Applied Studies degree prepares you for employment as a graphic designer in the print, multimedia, and communication fields. You will gain valuable skills and knowledge in branding, promotional and advertising design, color theory, publication and layout, packaging design, technical illustration, design and science photography, video production, photo editing, graphic animation, motion graphics, front-end web design, HTML/CSS, and three-dimensional printing and visualization design.

You will also strengthen your knowledge of the business environment, service marketing, and leadership strategies through applied business courses.

Students in the Wright Path program and students transferring with an associate degree from another college can complete their bachelor’s degree in as little as four semesters. Transfer scholarships are available.

Teresa Richter is coordinator and lecturer of graphic design and digital design at Lake Campus and interim director at The ONEIL Center at the Dayton Campus. You can email her at

This article was originally published in the fall 2023 issue of the Wright State Magazine. Read more stories at

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