Pratt Institute School of Design

For all of us to attain any measure of transformation and progress, it’s indispensable to accept the possibility of misadventure along the way. And only through conquering uncertainties while seeking new territory can we hope to make gains — whether in shaping fresh conjectures, mastering inventive tools or constructing new identities. The two-year, MFA in Communications Design program invites students to do all these, by tracing a path through exploratory processes that favors the posing of questions over the finding of answers. It celebrates a journey with open trajectories; like a slingshot that propels us further aloft, the program of study gives momentum toward destinations that are circumscribed only by the graduates’ degree of willingness to seek what they have not yet encountered.

The verb “explore” means “to search,” and its Latin roots, ex (out) and plorare (to cry out), hint at a difficult and demanding undertaking. Studio modules in Visual Language, Technology, Transformation Design and Cross-Disciplinary work together as platforms for wide experimentation; Seminar and Thesis further engage the mind in research and critical investigation. The spirit of discovery animates our graduates as they aim to surmount fixed boundaries, beliefs and obstacles, launching into an ever-changing world — and professional practice — with expansive possibilities. Theirs is a lifelong and exciting mission that is only now, at this very moment, just beginning to unfold.

Alex Liebergesell
Associate Professor
Program Co-Coordinator, MFA in Communications Design

In a historical moment where communication and knowledge, content and context, truth and rhetoric are less and less discrete, it is imperative to foster a young generation of designers. For this generation, it is a responsibility and a blessing to contribute critical thinking, creativity, and empathy to a society that needs to reinvent its processes. No prosperous future can emerge from bigotry, intolerance, and inequity, and designers have a stake in creating a just and sustainable society.

Communications design, in particular, is a discipline where the ability to understand each other is an invaluable asset, where opening spaces for cross-pollination and conversation create value, where respect and equality are a boost for success, where mutual support accelerates accomplishments.

The minds that are wide and open will be the leaders of a desirable tomorrow.

Gaia Hwang
Assistant Professor
Program Co-Coordinator, MFA in Communications Design