Course Overview

The Graphic Design program at Syracuse University Summer College is for high school students who are interested in learning more about design and communication on a college level. This two-week, hands-on, experiential course introduces core design fundamentals with exercises that will encourage conceptual thinking and visual problem-solving skills.

Assigned projects will introduce students to visual organization and structure, simplification of form, graphic translation, graphic interpretation, creative writing, and art direction. Through project-based learning, students will engage in design problem-solving and processes, idea development, and the execution of final ‘deliverables’. They will also have the opportunity to learn about and discuss some of the areas of focus that are open to a professional designer.

All students who successfully complete the course will receive a Certificate of Completion and have the opportunity to request a Syracuse University noncredit transcript.

Learning Objectives

While the course will include some computer-based work, students are not expected to be proficient in any of the professional software programs. Software to be introduced include:

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Illustrator
  • InDesign
  • Students will also be introduced and the role of digital proficiency in the field of graphic design will be discussed.

Course Information

Course Prefix and Number: SCN 085

Format: On Campus (at Syracuse University)

Eligibility: Students must be of rising high school sophomore, junior, or senior status – or a 2024 high school graduate. 

Credit: Noncredit

Grading: Pass/Fail


  • Residential: $4,095
  • Commuter: $3,166

Program rates are subject to change and will be approved by the board of trustees. Discounts and scholarships are also available.

Program Information

Summer College – On Campus: Experience what college is really like: take a college-level course, live in a residence hall, have meals with friends in a dining hall, and participate in activities and events on campus.

Course Dates and Details

ProgramCourse DatesClass Time (Eastern Time)Credit/NoncreditStatus
Summer College – On Campus2-Week Session II: Monday, July 22 – Friday, Aug. 2, 2024MTWThF
9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Class will break for lunch daily for approximately one hour. Class times subject to change.

Course Requirements

Required Supplies

Students should budget for purchasing a supply kit, additional details coming soon!

Typical Day

Tentative Schedule

A typical morning will include lectures, presentations, and demonstrations. Afternoons will allow for creative exploration, peer collaboration, and independent work.

When class is over, and on weekends, students can look forward to various Summer College – On Campus activities to meet and connect with other students! Check out our On Campus Experience page for more information!

Field Trips

Students may get a chance to visit Boxcar Press. This is one of the, if not the most prestigious letterpress shops in the United States. More details coming soon!

End Event

The last day of class will be a celebration, as students will engage in a final presentation that will showcase their new competencies and design work. Parents are welcome to attend!

Faculty Bios

Carmel Nicoletti

Carmel Nicoletti has been teaching art and design for over 20 years. Her teaching has included courses in design, typography, glass, sculpture, drawing, color, and the history of art. She has an MFA degrees in visual arts and education. Nicoletti’s work has been shown in galleries across the United States and in public installations. “My teaching style emphasizes the flow of one idea to another. I see each student as having a path towards both professional and personal development. My job as a professor is to help in the discovery of this pathway; leading a student to find connections between percept and concept.