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Career and Education Opportunities for Graphic Designers in Omaha, Nebraska

Graphic designer career and educational opportunities abound in Omaha, Nebraska. There are currently 1,900 jobs for graphic designers in Nebraska and this is projected to grow by 16% to 2,200 jobs by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for graphic designers are expected to grow by about 12.9%. Graphic designers generally design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos.

Graphic designers earn about $16 per hour or $35,310 per year on average in Nebraska and about $20 hourly or $42,400 yearly on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Art and Design, people working as graphic designers in Nebraska earn more. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Art and Design nationally. Graphic designers work in a variety of jobs, including: forms designer, food stylist, and digital artist.

The Omaha area is home to thirty-one schools of higher education, including ten within twenty-five miles of Omaha where you can get a degree as a graphic designer. The most common level of education for graphic designers is a Bachelor's degree. You can expect to spend about four years studying to be a graphic designer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Graphic Designer

In general, graphic designers design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. They also may use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.

Graphic designers develop designs and sample layouts on the basis of knowledge of layout principles and esthetic design concepts. They also maintain archives of images or previous work products. Equally important, graphic designers have to design negatives and prints to produce layout photographs, using negative and print developing equipment and tools. They are often called upon to use computer software to generate new images. They are expected to design graphics and layouts for product illustrations and Internet websites. Finally, graphic designers key data into computer equipment to generate layouts for clients or supervisors.

Every day, graphic designers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to be creative and generate new ideas.

It is important for graphic designers to mark up and assemble final layouts to ready layouts for printer. They are often called upon to produce still and animated graphics for on-air and taped portions of television news broadcasts, using electronic video equipment. They also research new software or layout concepts. They are sometimes expected to talk with clients to consider and decide on layout design. Somewhat less frequently, graphic designers are also expected to photograph layouts, using camera, to make layout prints for supervisors or clients.

Graphic designers sometimes are asked to inspect final layouts and suggest improvements as needed. And finally, they sometimes have to ready notes and instructions for staff who assemble and ready final layouts for printing.

Like many other jobs, graphic designers must be thorough and dependable and believe in innovation and creative thought.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Omaha include:

  • Art Director. Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches, and direct workers engaged in art work, layout design, and copy writing for visual communications media, such as magazines, books, and packaging.
  • Camera Operator. Operate television, video, or motion picture camera to photograph images or scenes for various purposes, such as TV broadcasts, advertising, or motion pictures.
  • Craftsman. Create or reproduce hand-made objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, and needlecraft.
  • Director. Interpret script, conduct rehearsals, and direct activities of cast and technical crew for stage, motion pictures, or radio programs.
  • Display Specialist. Plan and erect commercial displays.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Industrial Designer. Develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys. Combine artistic talent with research on product use, marketing, and materials to create the most functional and appealing product design.
  • Interior Designer. Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling merchandise, or improving life style. May specialize in a particular field, style, or phase of interior design.
  • Multi-Media Artist or Animator. Create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.
  • Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Graphic Designer Training

College of Saint Mary - Omaha, NE

College of Saint Mary, 7000 Mercy Rd., Omaha, NE 68106. College of Saint Mary is a small college located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 953 students and an admission rate of 45%. College of Saint Mary has a bachelor's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art.

Southeast Community College Area - Lincoln, NE

Southeast Community College Area, 301south 68th Street Place, Lincoln, NE 68510-2449. Southeast Community College Area is a large college located in Lincoln, Nebraska. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,557 students. Southeast Community College Area has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated one, one, and thirty students respectively in 2008.

Doane College-Lincoln Grand Island and Master - Lincoln, NE

Doane College-Lincoln Grand Island and Master, 303 N 52nd St, Lincoln, NE 68504. Doane College-Lincoln Grand Island and Master is a small college located in Lincoln, Nebraska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 1,651 students. Doane College-Lincoln Grand Island and Master has a bachelor's degree program in Graphic Design.

Creighton University - Omaha, NE

Creighton University, 2500 California Plaza, Omaha, NE 68178. Creighton University is a medium sized university located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,059 students and an admission rate of 79%. Creighton University has a bachelor's degree program in Graphic Design.

ITT Technical Institute-Omaha - Omaha, NE

ITT Technical Institute-Omaha, 9814 M St, Omaha, NE 68127-9812. ITT Technical Institute-Omaha is a small school located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 600 students and an admission rate of 45%. ITT Technical Institute-Omaha has 2 areas of study related to Graphic Designer. They are:

  • Web Page, Digital/Multimedia & Information Resources Design, associate's degree which graduated 12 students in 2008.
  • Design and Visual Communications, associate's degree.

Midland Lutheran College - Fremont, NE

Midland Lutheran College, 900 N. Clarkson, Fremont, NE 68025. Midland Lutheran College is a small college located in Fremont, Nebraska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 801 students and an admission rate of 78%. Midland Lutheran College has a bachelor's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art.

Dana College - Blair, NE

Dana College, 2848 College Dr, Blair, NE 68008. Dana College is a small college located in Blair, Nebraska. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 565 students and an admission rate of 71%. Dana College has 2 areas of study related to Graphic Designer. They are:

  • Web Page, Digital/Multimedia & Information Resources Design, bachelor's degree.
  • Graphic Design, bachelor's degree.

The Creative Center - Omaha, NE

The Creative Center, 10850 Emmet St, Omaha, NE 68164. The Creative Center is a small school located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 118 students and an admission rate of 69%. The Creative Center has an associate's degree and a bachelor's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated thirty-one and twenty-one students respectively in 2008.

Metropolitan Community College Area - Omaha, NE

Metropolitan Community College Area, 30 & Fort Street, Omaha, NE 68111-1610. Metropolitan Community College Area is a large college located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,055 students. Metropolitan Community College Area has an associate's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated thirty-two students in 2008.

Vatterott College-Spring Valley Campus - Omaha, NE

Vatterott College-Spring Valley Campus, 11818 I Street, Omaha, NE 68137. Vatterott College-Spring Valley Campus is a small college located in Omaha, Nebraska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 329 students. Vatterott College-Spring Valley Campus has 2 areas of study related to Graphic Designer. They are:

  • Computer Graphics, associate's degree which graduated 10 students in 2008.
  • Graphic Design, one to two year which graduated 5 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Web Professional - Site Designer: A CWP Site Designer implements and maintains Web sites using authoring and scripting languages, content creation and management tools, and digital media.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Web Graphics and Multimedia Certificate: Equips the student for work as a Web graphic artist, creating illustrations, pictures, buttons, and other images for use on the Web, as well as the ability to create interactive multimedia designs in Flash or other programs.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Certified Web Designer Associate: Web Designer Associates are proficient in the visual arts and creating the images and designs that capture and keep visitors' interest.

For more information, see the World Organization of Webmasters website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Omaha, Nebraska

Omaha, Nebraska
Omaha, Nebraska photo by Yassie

Omaha is located in Douglas County, Nebraska. It has a population of over 438,646, which has grown by 12.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Omaha, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Omaha are valued at $105,100 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, 1,576 new homes were built in Omaha, down from 1,905 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Omaha are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 28.7% of Omaha residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Omaha is 4.7%, which is greater than Nebraska's average of 4.5%.

The percentage of Omaha residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 54.5%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Calvary Baptist Church, Calvary Chapel of Omaha and Calvary Foursquare Gospel Church are all churches located in Omaha. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the Lutheran Church.

Omaha is home to the Gibson and the Cedar Hills Golf Course as well as Al Caniglia Field and Adams Park. Shopping malls in the area include Frederick Square Shopping Center, North Park Shopping Center and Oak View Mall. Visitors to Omaha can choose from Countryside Suites, Hampton Inn Omaha-Central and Townhouse Inn for temporary stays in the area.