CE Graphic Design Certificate Alumni Spotlight: Dennis Mizzoni

April 3, 2020

Dennis Mizzoni earned his certificate from the Continuing Education Graphic Design program in Spring 2019 and is now working as a designer for Vanguard Group. 

What is your professional background? What first interested you in the UArts Graphic Design Certificate program?
I worked in public relations professionally for 4 years and was looking to transition to a career in graphic design.

How has the program changed or diversified your professional skill set?
The Graphic Design Certificate Program helped me develop better design skills that positioned me for new opportunities in the field.

Did this Certificate program help you attract or secure any new career opportunities?
Yes. During the summer of 2019, Program Director, Caitlin Perkins shared a freelance graphic design opportunity with Continuing Education Certificate students. I contacted the organization, interviewed and ended up working for them for several months. Additionally, I began a contract position at The Vanguard Group in November, 2019. My professor, Gregg Robinson is now my manager. This Certificate Program gave me the skills and connections that opened this door for me.

What advice do you have for future Certificate students?
It is important to create and maintain relationships with professors, they can be great resources, references and may one day be your colleagues. Utilize your classes as opportunities to build your portfolio and don’t forget to ask questions about the design world to help you figure out where you might fit in.

Did you find the classroom setting beneficial? How did you engage with your peers?
Class sizes were relatively small, which was helpful for critiques and we were able to grow together. Having classes with familiar faces made for a comfortable environment that was beneficial for everyone. The more we got to know each other, the easier it was to critique one another's work effectively and constructively.

What was the highlight of your Certificate program experience?
Personally, I enjoyed the poster project in Kendra Lebo's Photoshop class. The purpose of the project was to combine quotes and images in a set of posters that tackle an important theme. The theme of my posters is the power of education. I used the juxtaposition of handcuffs and a syringe to convey the idea that education should be taken as seriously as issues surrounding healthcare and incarceration.


Learn more about the Graphic Design Certificate