Graphic communications is a vibrant and growing sector of the economy. In North Carolina alone, print-related media activities employ more than 22,000 people in 1,400 establishments. This includes packaging design and production, print production of all kinds and cross-media digital marketing.
Appalachian State University’s Thomas W. Reese Graphic Arts and Imaging Technology (GAIT) program prepares you for entry-level supervisory and staff positions in graphic communications. The Graphic Arts and Imaging Technology (BS) - Cross Media Production degree, in particular, focuses on applying graphic messaging across different channels/platforms such as web, email, print, cover wraps, etc. to communicate to various markets. You can also choose the Print / Packaging Production concentration within the program. As a GAIT student, you’ll be eligible to apply for scholarships in excess of $20,000, and you’ll have the opportunity to participate in Career Connections, the program’s job fair for majors.
This program is housed in Appalachian’s Department of Art.
Employment: Students are prepared to enter the workforce in a range of roles upon graduation. Employers include Classic Graphics, WestRock (formerly RockTenn), Salem1, R.R. Donnelly, Meredith-Webb, Wright Global Graphics, Copac Global Packaging, CCL Label and other companies.
The Program of Study includes 25 semester hours of core classes in Graphic Arts and Imaging Technology, plus 15 semester hours of required Cross Media Production concentration courses and 12 semester hours of GAIT electives. You’re also required to participate in two internships, which can often lead to job offers upon graduation.
A description of courses can be found here.
In order to put you at a competitive advantage in the field, a General Business minor is required of all Graphic Arts and Imaging Technology majors.
Engagement Outside the Classroom
Technical Association of the Graphic Arts (TAGA) - a student club of this professional organization.
Gamma Epsilon Tau - a national collegiate honors society for graphic art students.
Appalachian is committed to introducing students to different cultures and teaching them how to live and interact in a global society.
- Students learn in campus laboratories using contemporary production technology.
- Mountaineer Printing is a student-run print shop serving the campus community. It is operated as part of an advanced printing and finishing course.
- Two internships are required to deepen students’ practical knowledge and experience.
- The GAIT program is well supported by an active industry advisory board that supports the program mission and provides students opportunities for industry internships.
- This program offers a number of scholarships.
Number of Students
55 in the GAIT program
Method of Delivery
On campus only
- Pre-press managers
- Post-press managers
- Digital press managers
- Art directors
- Account managers
- Vice presidents of sales
Dr. George Glisan
Professor and program coordinator
119 Katherine Harper Hall