Pacific Union College - Angwin, CA | California Schools with Design Programs | Graphic Design

Pacific Union College

School Summary
One Angwin Ave
Angwin, CA 94508
(707) 965-6313
Degree Type:
Less than one year certificate; Associate's degree; Bachelor's degree; Master's degree
Campus Setting:
Rural: Fringe
Campus Housing:

About Pacific Union College

Pacific Union College is a private Seventh-day Adventist Liberal Arts college located in Angwin, California, in the mountains above St. Helena in the Napa Valley region The 1,800 acres surrounding the campus include more than 30 miles of hiking and biking trails. The Albion Field Station is owned and operated by PUC, designed for educational purposes as an ideal base from which to explore and learn. The Station is located near the Pacific Ocean in the heart of the Mendocino Coast and is open to the general public with cabins for overnight visits.

PUC offers a 2-year AS degree program in graphic design. The program requires general education courses including English, math, and public speaking, two courses in religious studies, and health and physical education courses. Required core courses for the graphic design major include drawing fundamentals, design and composition, photography, typography, and digital photo imaging. Two levels of coursework in digital studio are required as well, and courses in marketing such as advertising management are recommended as cognate courses. Completion of a thesis project is required of all students for graduation.

PUC offers 4-year BS degree programs in graphic design with a choice of emphases. Students may choose from graphic design, illustration, or Web emphases when completing the degree. Much of the required core courses are the same for all emphases, with courses including design tools, materials, and techniques, drawing fundamentals, design and composition, photography, typography, illustration, and interactive design. The illustration emphasis adds courses in acrylic painting and collage and assemblage. The design emphasis includes a course in three dimensional design. The Web emphasis adds additional coursework in photography plus courses in Web page publication and doing business on the Web. All three require completion of a thesis project, plus courses in self promotion and publication design for graduation. General education requirements for the BS degree include courses in College English, speech, statistics, world civilizations, literature, art and music history, natural sciences, health and fitness, and religion.

PUC also offers both 2-year AS and 4-year BS degrees programs in photography. Both programs require coursework in design and composition, history of photography, two levels each of photography and color photography, portrait and commercial photography, digital photo imaging, and professional practices in art. Cognate courses in photojournalism, media law and ethics, and small business management are required for the BS degree and recommended for the AS degree. The BS degree requires additional courses in architectural photography, advanced portraiture, and fine print, plus an independent study course and completion of a thesis project. The AS degree requires completion of an Associate Degree project. For both programs, general education requirements include foundational courses in English, math, and speech, plus religion, physical education, and health courses. The BS degree requires additional courses in world history, literature, art and music history, and natural sciences.

Finally, PUC's Visual Arts Department offers a 4-year BS degree program in film and television production. This degree requires the general education courses previously listed for all BS degrees. Core courses required for the major include typography, visual communication and semiotics, media law and ethics, scriptwriting, filmmaking, lighting and cinematography, broadcast production, special effects, and three levels of digital film production. An internship and completion of a thesis project is required for graduation.

PUC offers many support services to its students. The college owns and operates its own private airport for visitor services, flight training, and rental services. Students also have access to a career and counseling center and services including estate planning, information technology systems, health and media. There are many different clubs and organizations in which students may participate, including cultural, academic, special interest, ministries, and honor societies. Spiritual life is considered very important at PUC, as evidenced by the many religious services and campus ministry organizations available, plus an on-campus chaplain and a College Church. PUC also offers a small school atmosphere with an enrollment of approximately 1500 students and a teacher: student ration of 15:1. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges gave PUC its most favorable rating.

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Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2018-19, National Center for Education Statistics,