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For the third consecutive year, MIAD has been named a Top Graphic Design School by Graphic Design USA (GDUSA) magazine. The magazine also recognized two MIAD Communication Design students—junior Ana Villarama and senior Josie Borja Truax—as 2018 Students to Watch. The Top Graphic Design School honor recognizes “institutions that excel in preparing students to work successfully and effectively in a professional graphic design setting,” according to GDUSA.

Ana Villarama“The Communication Design program at MIAD is focused on helping our students become our graduates who will have very successful careers in a variety of design areas,” says Dale Shidler, MIAD’s Chair of 2D/4D Design.

In class, MIAD Communication Design students gain professional experience, working on projects with partners such as the Pettit National Ice Center, Verlo Mattress, Colectivo Coffee and First Stage Children’s Theatre. MIAD Communication Design graduates find employment in areas such as package design, identity and branding, advertising, web design, user interface/user experience and information graphics.

Ana says her experience at MIAD has prepared her well for her future career.

“The program takes on a lot of the qualities of professional communication design environments,” she says. “I think, overall, it’s a great emulation of the real world.”

Ana excelled in an internship with Core Creative, a full-service advertising and branding agency in Milwaukee, where she worked on social media graphics, print ads and promotional videos.

“Ana is an extremely self-driven individual who has a real passion for design. Her quest for knowledge and passion for learning has long impressed me,” says Assistant Professor Nicole Hauch.

Similarly, Assistant Professor Adam Setala has wonderful things to say about Josie.Sketches by Josie Borja Truax

“To say Josie is a hard-working student would be a gross understatement. She is a talented designer whose technical skills are only matched by her willingness to take conceptual risks and break rules,” he says.

Josie used those skills at an internship with Scott Advertising, a food service advertising agency in Milwaukee. She assisted with photoshoots and designed ads and logos.

Josie calls the GDUSA Students to Watch recognition “an honor” and “great surprise.” She says she is now looking ahead to the 2018 MIAD Senior Exhibition where she and more than 120 other senior artists and designers will show off their thesis projects, April 20 – May 12.

“We have been working so hard and I know it will be a great show come April.”

Image 1: Ana Villarama
Image 2: Sketches by Josie Borja Truax