Fall 2023

August 30, 2023

kevin   marjan

We are excited to welcome Kevin Mannens and Marjan Khatibi to our Design faculty!

Kevin Mannens is an Academy Award-nominated and Annie Award-winning technical director and visual effects designer who has been instrumental in close to a dozen Hollywood blockbusters. During his career, Mannens has worked at the world’s leading visual effects facilities including Industrial Light and Magic, Moving Picture Company, and Sony Pictures Imageworks. His credits include Transformers: Age of Extinction, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Pacific Rim, The Amazing Spiderman, G-Force, The Smurfs and Alice in Wonderland (for which Imageworks received the Oscar nod). As part of the FX team at ILM, Mannens was the recipient of the 2014 Annie Award for “Outstanding Achievement in Animated Effects in a Live-Action Production” for his work on Pacific Rim. A visual storyteller first and foremost, Kevin is fluent across various media from 3D animation and VFX to Live action and virtual reality. Kevin is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker. His social impact and wildlife documentaries (Malpelo: Mountain of Sharks, Marsh Clouds, The Taking of Harris Neck, Mud Harvest, and more) have won hundreds of awards in international film festivals; and were screened all over the world.

Marjan Khatibi is an accomplished visual designer, researcher, and Adobe Education Leader. Through the powerful mediums of Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Animation, Marjan shares her passion for promoting gender equity with a unique interdisciplinary approach. Marjan has effectively mastered conveying complex ideas to a diverse audience. Her research explores the limitless possibilities of virtual spaces to foster empathy, immersive experiences, and societal change.

Marjan received notable grants from influential organizations such as Unity and Meta Immersive Learning. These grants have allowed her to explore and push the boundaries of VR, AR, and Animation to effect positive societal impact and drive meaningful change.

Her awards include the "Outstanding Achievement Award for VR Animation" at the 32nd season of World Film Carnival – Singapore (WFCS) and the "Best Student Film" at Anmtn! – Online Animation Awards, Ukraine. Marjan Khatibi's impactful animation has exceeded borders and resonated with audiences worldwide, including festivals in the United Kingdom, Canada, Ukraine, India, and the United States. Her work's selection and festival screening has provided a platform for her to connect with diverse audiences and engage in cross-cultural conversations.

Marjan served as a jury member at the Cinequest Film and VR Festival and has contributed to shaping the future of storytelling and immersive experiences. She has shared her insights and knowledge with peers and professionals by presenting research at prestigious conferences like the AIGA Design Educators Community (DEC), ICOAH (The 9th International Conference on Arts and Humanities), BEA (The Broadcast Education Association), and UCDA (University & College Designers Association).

Spring 2023 Faculty Citations

May 30, 2023

The Department of Design is thrilled to announce the recipients of our Faculty Citation Awards. These students are graduating seniors that consistently show initiative, dedication and innovation in their work.  They are known for their meticulous craft, their creativity, willingness to mentor others and steadfast reliability. They inspire both the faculty and their peers and we are delighted to honor them for their contributions to the SJSU Department of Design.

Graphic Design: Renee Edelman

With design creating so much of what we see, what we use, and what we experience, Renee believes designers hold the potential to change the way we interact with our world. While always interested in the arts, Renee first became aware of graphic design in high school when she realized that graphic design is influential in the way we experience life. Her passion has only grown, leading her to the blossoming graphic designer she is today. After learning the fundamentals, the BFA Graphic Design program has allowed her to expand her horizons and fully engage in the design process to create many unique projects, including those in 2D and 3D branding, data visualization, motion graphics, wayfinding design, graphic installation, and user interface design. With many late nights and long days, the program has challenged her in the best way possible, leading to rewarding results. The students and professors that have supported her along the way have made the process even more valuable. Renee has a great awareness of sustainability, driven by a background in environmentalism, and hopes to have a positive influence on our world.


Industrial Design: Rafael Villacis

A fourth year industrial design student graduating May 2023. What he likes most about design is that it allows him to create things that are unique, and that sometimes put a smile on someone’s face. His favorite project is the UST Air Pack. For this project he interviewed firefighters to better understand how to design for them, and in the end the final design was something that they really appreciated. Outside of the studio Rafael loves spending time with friends and family, learning new things, being in the outdoors, and absolutely everything about soccer.


Animation: Meghan Graham

It was clear since the time of her admission to SJSU that Meghan Graham would be a force to be reckoned with in the Animation & Illustration (ANI) program. From day one, Meghan set out to become a stop-motion puppet fabricator and is currently completing SJSU’s first stop-motion, robot-assisted, music video for her graduation thesis project. She has excelled academically earning the title of Dean's Scholar in 2019 and 2021, President’s Scholar in 2020, 2022, and 2023, and is set to graduate Summa Cum Laude in May. She has also been extremely active in the ANI program, serving as Shrunkenheadman Vice President in academic year 21/22 and volunteering at and participating in just about every event that they’ve held. Her accomplishments have earned her the SJSU Associated Students Legacy Award in 2022 and Nationally, she was awarded the Women in Animation Laika Scholarship in 2022. Meghan is also active in other departments, serving as the current Set Design Assistant for the Film and Theater Department’s upcoming play, Hunchback of Seville. And in her spare time, she enjoys volunteering as a glass blowing assistant on campus.


Interior Design: Andrew Yee

Andrew believes creative education is endless and universally applicable across lifestyles and industries. He has branched into every direction possible with his innovative skills and cannot be “put in a box”. Andrew applies values of fellowship, logic, and malleability to influence his environment. He weaves these values into his creations to build and strengthen his friends, family, and community. Andrew intertwines the fibers of art and design to enhance the human experience. Thus, becoming a designer that is resistant to the most unraveling challenges.


Spring 2023 Senior Shows

May 01, 2023

We are excited to announce our Design Department Senior Show website is now LIVE! You will be able to access all current and past senior show student work, times and dates! 

Link to visit the website: SJSU Design Department Senior Show

Senior Show Website

Spring 2023 Senior Shows

April 28th, 2023
BFA Graphic Design Senior Show: Modulate one and not the same. 

Modulate is about variety, change, mixture, harmony, and balance. A class of sixteen women with different backgrounds and walks of life come together as one strong team. We find harmony in the combination of our individual ideas and perspectives as unexpected outcomes and moments of inspiration stem from the variety of skills and talents we offer. We are one and not the same.

Please join us together with complementary food and drinks as we walk down these the work and experiences that we have built over the past two years to present Modulate, one but not the same.


San Jose State University
Student Union 2nd floor ballrooms A and B
1 Washington Sq,
San Jose, CA 95192
General Reception:
May 7, 10AM–6PM PT
May 9, 10AM–6PM PT
May 10, 10AM–1PM PT

Professional Night:
May 8, 10AM–8PM PT

bfa graphic design 23

BFA Interior Design Senior Show

Thursday, May 18, 2023
PIVOT Santa Clara Showroom
5:30-8:30 PM. Please RSVP 

Interior Design BFA

October 01, 2022

Join the BFA GD Class of 2023 as we traverse the Visual Underground. We invite you to learn about the graphic design around us and explore the unseen. Our exhibition will be up from Monday 10/10, until Friday 10/14, from 9 a.m.—6 p.m. in ART 214. A world of unseen graphics that exist below your recognition. This is the visual underground. #visualunderground #sjsubfa2023

ART 214 Exhibit

BFA GD Class of 2023 would like to welcome all faculty and students to our exhibition, We Just Fit! Our exhibition opens on Monday morning 10/3, and will be open from 9 AM to 6 PM from Monday through Friday next week (10/3–7) in ART 214. We encourage everyone to come learn what SJSU Graphic Design means to us and share our experience! #sjsubfa2023

We Just Fit

The Department of Design is thrilled to announce the recipients of our newly minted Faculty Citation Awards. These students are graduating seniors that consistently show initiative, dedication and innovation in their work.  They are known for their meticulous craft, their creativity, willingness to mentor others and steadfast reliability. They inspire both the faculty and their peers and we are delighted to honor them for their contributions to the SJSU Department of Design.

Graphic Design: Ryan Parajas 
Ryans interest in art and design began when he was a kid messing around with MS Paint. By eighth grade, he upgraded to Photoshop and his interest in graphic design really took off. Ryan says going to SJSU and joining the BFA program was the best decision he ever made. Explore more about Ryan and his creative work.
Ryan news photo

Animation & Illustration: Meiya Lim
Meiya specializes in both 2D and 3D animation, and she has a love for learning about all aspects of the pipeline. She is a proud Shrunkenheadman and has served as a researcher on the SHM Charity Committee! She has directed a multitude of short films and other projects at SJSU, and plans to keep making more. She believes art has the power to influence others, which is why she strives to create meaningful stories that promote open-mindedness and push for understanding of different perspectives. See Meiya's portfolio here.

Meiya Lim BFA Gallery Reel 2022 from Meiya Lim on Vimeo.

Industrial Design: Kevin Closson
Kevin is an industrial designer with an interest in model making, graphic design, and user experience. Outside of work he enjoys filming scooter videos with friends in San Francisco. He is excited to use his industrial design skills to work on products in the action sports industry. Sample Kevin's adventurous work online.
Kevin News photo

Interior Design: Tuan Tran
Since Tuan was young, he loved to explore geometric shapes through Legos. He explored ways these geometric shapes could create simple, yet complex designs when it comes to density. As an interior design student, Tuan is an aspiring designer who finds inspiration through geometric shapes and forms. Creating a space that is fun and positively impacts the users and the community is what he aspires to do as a designer. At work and outside of work, you will find kindness, optimism, care, and help when you reach out to Tuan. Explore Tuan's portfolio here.

Tuan News photo

Congratulations to Keisha Herrera! She is the winner of  The Forust Sustainability Prize for Innovative Concepts in Additive Manufacturing

Forust is building a more sustainable future by upcycling waste sawdust in 3D printers to make products. Wood product manufacturing has traditionally been a subtractive process, but at Forust wood waste that otherwise would be land- filled or incinerated can be turned into fantastic new shapes and forms impossible to make with conventional techniques. This prize seeks to reward problem solvers who can take advantage of new methods of fabrication and manufacture and address new challenges with ground-breaking designs. Keisha's award winning proposal is for the N3lli B Rollator- Mobility with pride. The rollator is meant to be an extension of people’s personal style and appearance, instead of being a solely functional support aid on wheels. N3lli B is a crossover between furniture and aid. She has created a product that is hopefully seen not as a nuisance but as something to empower a person physically and emotionally. 3D printing with recycled wood from Forust will allow for seamless connections within the frame and will make it possible to minimize the number of connections and simplify the overall shape.

Award Photo


Congratulations to Will Christman the O+A "Design For Change" Award Winner!

Will's design for change is the UNHCR Desert Tent:  "A shelter system created for climate refugees in North Africa. Focused on creating community and efficiency in the refugee camp." We asked Will to tell us a little bit about himself in a short interview and here is what he had to say:
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I'm Will Christman, going into my 4th year in the SJSU Industrial Design program and minoring in environmental studies. 
2. So far, what has been the best thing about being a design student at SJSU?
I've enjoyed the approach to design at SJSU. Professors motivate us to find the best solution in all aspects of design. The thing I enjoy the most is having open-ended design prompts where we can explore design subjects we are interested in. 
3. What does the phrase "design for change" mean to you?
"Design for change" to me is all about finding unique solutions and ways to create. As designers we have the ability to create change. It's just about finding out what types of products we can fix. What I really enjoy about industrial design is coming up with multiple solutions to a problem. This thought process can have an impact on innovation. 
4. What is the dream job, or project, you hope to get when you graduate?
A company focused on implementing sustainable materials and unique approaches to industrial design would be my dream job. I want to work for a company that has an impact on the world through design.

Will Photo 

Animation & Illustration Senior Gallery Show: 

Friday May 20th 
Works/San Jose 365 S. Market Street San Jose, CA 95113

The website will launch at the same time the gallery show opens:


Graphic Design Senior Gallery Show: 

May 21st-24th 
San Jose State Univeristy Student Union Ballroom, second floor
You can use this link to RSVP to the event:

GD seniro show flyer

Industrial Design Senior Gallery Show: 

Thursday May 19th 
San Jose City HAll Rotunda

ID Senior show flyer


Interior Design Senior Gallery Show: 

Wednesday May 18th for professionals 
Thursday May 19th for family & friends

5:30-9:30PM in the Student Union ballrooms A&B



The O+A "Design for Change" Award

The world is in need of designers now more than ever. The interconnected issues we face as a society have compounded in recent years, forming a multifaceted global crisis that often seems too vast and daunting to tackle. But designers are problem solvers who can think outside of the box, adapt to new challenges, break new ground—and put creativity in the service of solving these problems.
The O+A "Design for Change" Award recognizes the unconventional designer who is determined to solve the most crucial problems of today and anticipate the pressing issues of tomorrow. Someone who is willing to change the game, think beyond the program brief, and innovate holistically with the community, ecosystem, and planet in mind. The "Design for Change" Award honors the SJSU student designer who is truly passionate about giving back and making a positive impact on the world through design. This year’s recipient will receive a cash prize of $1,000.
The focus and theme of the "Design for Change" Award will change annually to highlight some of the challenges and contemporary concerns interior designers are facing, in both the near and far future, which demand a rethinking of how we design. For 2022, the award's inaugural year, we are seeking project submissions that address issues around environmental comfort. Examples of environmental comfort include but are not limited to project explorations that address the use of vegetation, passive climate control, natural lighting, the use of natural or sustainable materials, and ideas about how the body can be in harmony with or interact with nature. Students should select an individual project to enter for the award. Entry submissions should include a resume, a project portfolio not to exceed 5 pages, and a project description of up to 500 words. Applications are due on May 2 and the winner will be announced on May 17. Finalists for the award will be asked to participate in an interview with representatives from O+A.

O+A Design for Change

We will have a special screening of all the SHM short films completed in 2020 and 2021 (14 short films using different techniques and about all kinds of different topics. It's pretty wild!) April 23rd at 5:30pm at the student union (right after the SHM Con!). There will also be a fantastic Q&A with the filmmakers right after the screening. Be there and celebrate the short films made in our community! Masks and proof of vaccination are required. To save a spot, RSVP on this link:


*RSVP required

Our SJSU graphic design faculty Joel Miller's protest posters have been accessioned into the permanent collection at LACMA. Congratulations Joe!
You can see the posters on display as part of the “What Would You Say?" exhibit.

Joe Miller

Please join us in congratulating Animation & Illustration student Meghan Graham! She was selected as one of 18 recipients of the prestigious Women in Animation scholarship. Out of 170 applications from 72 schools across the US as well as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Finland, France, Germany, Indonesia, Mexico, Mongolia, Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Spain, and the Philippines during the 2021-2022 program, the WIA scholarship committee selected these 18 amazing students as most deserving of scholarships, and Design Dept student Meghan Graham is one of them. Congratulations, Meghan!

ani megan photo

Meatspace Magazine is an independent, student-run magazine that features the work of artists, designers, writers, photographers, filmmakers, and more, from across disciplines at SJSU. They're looking for creatives who value creativity and humor to apply to Meatspace and contribute to their next issue! Interested students can apply through the Fall Application link in their profile bio. The deadline is this Saturday the 11th! @meatspacemagazine


SJSU Animation & Illustration Team wins production award from ASIFA-Hollywood

The ASIFA-Hollywood Animation Educators Forum awards yearly scholarships to support college students in their pursuit of education or to complete their thesis projects. A panel of animation educators and professionals have judged the completed applications, and the SJSU short film project titled Reyna has been awarded over $4k funds to complete their senior thesis project.

Led by Animation & Illustration graduating senior, Director Jenielle Salarda, Reyna is a 2D animated short film that follows a Filipino girl who is getting ready for the Santacruzan festival. Fighting against her insecurities triggered by some of her community's response to the way she looks, she learns about the origins of Western beauty standards and why she should stand up against them. We aim to open up a conversation that confronts this painful history and the harm that colorism, fatphobia, homophobia, and the rejection of indigenous features continue to echo into our communities today. Our ancestors' means to survive by emulating their oppressors do not serve to define who we are and what we can do as a stronger, more unified community of the present. With an incredibly talented team of diverse individuals, we hope to share a diverse and inclusive space to feel empowered in your body to stand up for yourself and your community.



New Faculty
We are delighted to welcome Eleanor Pries to the Department of Design at SJSU. Pries is joining us as an Assistant Professor in the Interior Design Program. Trained and captivated across multiple disciplines, her research explores the legacy and destiny of civic infrastructure, hydrologic architecture, and absorptive materials.

Pries holds a BA in Visual and Environmental Studies from Harvard University, MA in Architectural History from the University of Virginia, and MA from the University of California, Berkeley. She received the Frederick Sheldon prize fellowship and John K. Branner prize fellowship. Pries has also been practicing for over ten years; her firm engages architecture, urbanism, and strategy.

A committed educator, Pries lectured in architecture at SJSU and UC Berkeley before joining SJSU full-time in 2021. In studio, students test scalable geometries, construct tectonic “clouds”, and sculpt light effects, using digital technologies and fabrication tools. Pries serves as an Advisory Board Ambassador to San Francisco’s Youth Art Exchange and is an avid surfer at Ocean Beach.
Pries Faculty Photo

Professor Raquel Coelho Awarded Grant by The International Animated Film Society of Hollywood
Professor Coelho from animation with Professor Bechert from Film and Theater have won a grant for their proposed project “After the Great Collapse”. The project is for a stop motion short film that is a feminist sci-fi dialogue between two scientists working in a futuristic lab. The film will use 3D printed puppets as part of the project. We look forward to seeing the results of this already award winning creative work.
Raquel C Photo for grant

Graphic Design Students and Assistant Professor Diane Lee Collaborate with Robots
Assistant Professor Diane Lee has collaborated with Andrew Kudless from the University of Houston and 23 SJSU graphic design students to robotically create a collection of new letter forms. The students used grasshopper to create scripts to control a UR5 robot arm, which was able to draw the letter forms using a pentel water brush. 

Industrial Design Students WIN BIG!
The SJSU Industrial Design students participated in a multi-campus design competition hosted Autodesk and Limar Italia. Students were asked to design bicycle helmets. We are thrilled to share that SJSU had 7 winners in the competition! Check out the winning designs on the Limar Competition website.

Here are our winners:

  • John Michael Hoffman  - Best overall design award
  • Kai Bannister - 1st place commuter category
  • Thong Le - 2nd place commuter category
  • David Covarrubius  - 3rd place commuter category
  • Ryan Yokono - 1st place SJSU school category
  • Jerry Ma  - 2nd place SJSU school category
  • Janella Catura  - runner up

ID photo Student work

Professor San Fratello at SFMOMA
Professor San Fratello and her partner Ronald Rael will exhibit their work at SFMOMA in the exhibition Drawing the Line: Rael San Fratello at the U.S.-Mexico Border, opening August 21, 2021. 

Much like the policy and geography that define it, the line drawn between Mexico and the United States is malleable, literally shifting with time. Architecture firm Rael San Fratello has spent over a decade questioning the idea of the border and focusing on the evolving contexts of urbanism in borderlands.
Virginia Image of work

Spring 2021 News

Spring 2021 Senior Shows: 

Animation & Illustration Senior Show You can use this link to view student work 

Congratulations graduates!! 

ANI Senior Show picture


Interior Design BFA Senior Show

Congratualtions Seniors!!! 
IT Senior Show photo

Graphic Design Senior Show

BFA GDPhoto Senior Show

BA Design Studies DSGN 197

BA DSGN197 Senior Photo

Industrial Design

ID Senior ShowPhoto

Congratulations to our Graphic Design Students on winning the Silver Prize in The Graphis Design Competition.....just as the parameters involved to evolve and take a new twist! See the latest iteration here!

Graphic Design Stamp photo

"Data+AI+Design" - Guest speaker lectures and workshops in Spring 2021

Please check details of the upcoming events on the data+ai+design website. 
All of the events require registrations. The Zoom link for each event will be sent to only registered attendees. Free admission to all lectures and workshops. 
All the lectures are open to the public.
All the workshops are for SJSU students only. (SJSU email is required for registration) Each workshop has limited seats (25-30 seats) so please register ASAP. 
Please contact Prof. Yoon Chung Han ( if you have any questions. 

Guest Speakers Spring 2021

In order to promote a dialog on the theme Equity, and to integrate awareness on themes such as Equality and Inclusivity as well as Respect for Differences on Campus, my class at SJSU made this piece out of a basic exercise that I teach. Lickable, pinhole perforated by hand on vintage machines, produced at the Portland Stamp Company in Oregon, with a first run of 100 pieces, this stamp sheet can be used as a decoration, added individually letters, or find its place in Stamp Art collections. Available for purchase.

Stamps- Graphic Design JB Levy

Logo and branding concepts by My Hoang for FutrMasks, a research initiative at the SJSU industrial design department. The goal of the Futrmasks project is to explore sustainable materials, and a more user-centered design approach to solve problems of filtration, safety, comfort, and sustainability in personal protective equipment (PPE) as it becomes part of our everyday lifestyles. Jamie produced this work as a member of the HA187 design and marketing internship at SJSU. See more @187_archive

Graphic Design

Cover concepts by Ryan Huang for his GD83 final class project. Students in the class research and produce a book on three influential designers. Ryan hand-drew these original letterforms for his covers, experimenting with vector curves and forms to create unique design options.
Graphic Design

The future is international. Animation students from San Jose, CA and sound students from Monterrey, Mexico collaborated on making short films during Fall 2020. Several impressive films were animated and scored in just one semester. Featured here is “Reach Out” by Ange Macedo (SJSU), sound by Rolando Solas, José Luviano, Jesus Hernandez (Tecnológico de Monterrey)
ANI Photo-Angela Wu
Branding by Quynh Nguyen @hiquinnng for the college-wide Pandemic Pandemonium initiative. See more work by design students at the H&A Marketing Lab @187_Archive

HA187 course mockup