Samford University - Birmingham, AL | Alabama Schools with Design Programs | Graphic Design

Samford University

School Summary
800 Lakeshore Drive
Birmingham, AL 35229
(205) 726-2011
Degree Type:
One but less than two years certificate; Bachelor's degree; Postbaccalaureate certificate; Master's degree; Post-master's certificate; Doctor's degree - research/scholarship; Doctor's degree - professional practice
Campus Setting:
Suburb: Large
Campus Housing:

About Samford University

Samford University is a private, coeducational, Southern Baptist-affiliated university located in Homewood, Alabama, a Birmingham suburb. The campus is located in the mountainous area of Shades Valley, less than six miles south of Birmingham. The area provides many opportunities for visitors seeking vigorous outdoor activity, sometimes throwing in a touch of history for good measure. East Lake Park provides numerous outdoor opportunities, including a hike around one of Birmingham¡¦s oldest parks. Visitors can also fish, sunbathe, or play golf at nearby Don Hawkins Golf Course. The Civil Rights Trail is a walk that visits a variety of major Civil Rights¡Vera sites and passes through the heart of the 4th Avenue Historical and Business District. The walk doesn't tour all of the city¡¦s significant Civil Rights sites, but it packs in a wealth of historic places that no person interested in Birmingham history should miss. The Oak Hill Cemetery Walk is also a walk through Birmingham¡¦s history as the city¡¦s first cemetery. The National Register of Historical Places added Oak Hill to its roster in 1977.

Samford's school of the arts offers 4-year BA and BS degrees in fine arts with a concentration in graphic design. Basic coursework includes structure, drawing, painting, and art history. Advanced coursework includes graphic production, typography, Web design, computer graphics, and graphic design in advertising. An externship or independent study course is also required for graduation, along with a senior portfolio. Additional electives available include illustration, photography, video motion graphics, and letterpress printmaking.

The school also offers a 4-year BA degree in theatre with a theatre design track. Theatre core coursework includes theatre production, makeup for the theatre, beginning directing, and set, lighting, or costume design. Electives for the design track include scenic painting for the theatre, lighting or costume design, and history of fashion and costume. Seniors may choose to participate in an internship or a directed studies course. A capstone course that consists of reading and study of works listed on a departmental reading list and an oral examination is required of all theatre majors.

Samford also offers a 4-year BA degree in interior design through the University's Orlean Bullard Beeson School of Education and Professional Studies. Core coursework for the degree includes technical drawing, space planning, design concepts, textiles and materials, and presentation methods. Elective courses include historic preservation and adaptive reuse, independent study, and special topics. An art minor is required, with study of structure, drawing, painting, and history and theory of art, architecture, and design. The program recommends a course in portfolio development and an internship prior to graduation, but it is not required.

At Samford, undergraduate scholarships are available from a variety of departmental, independent and private resources. Need-based scholarships are awarded to students based on financial need as demonstrated through the information obtained from the application for financial aid. Need-based scholarships include Samford University Endowed Scholarships and Samford University Departmental Scholarships. Non-need-based scholarships are awarded to students based on specific criteria set by each program. Available scholarships include merit-based scholarships, Board of Aid scholarships, A. Earl Potts scholarships, and athletic scholarships.

Samford officials believe that co-curricular involvement is an important aspect of a total education. Students are encouraged to select from more than 100 honors, religious, professional, educational, service and social student organizations. These groups, overseen by the Office of Student Involvement, offer students an opportunity to explore their interests with others who share them. Available organizations are diverse, from a student-led group of Amnesty International to the Samford Young Life chapter. There are also professional groups such as a chapter of the American Institute for Graphic Artists, Greek and honor fraternities and sororities, and service organizations including Bread for the World. The university organizes a Student Organization Fair every Fall semester to encourage student participation.

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