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At Coker, you will explore your creativity, take risks, research and study the work of artists, and develop your artistic skills and independent vision with 24-hour access to studio space and one-on-one support from professors.

Our discussion-based round-table learning philosophy ensures that you grow with your peers and learn to confidently communicate and defend your views. At the end of your four years, a defining capstone project or senior show demonstrates a practical application of the critical theory knowledge and skills you’ve gained.


Art Education

In order to teach art, you must first study and understand it. In this concentration, you’ll develop your personal technical skills and artistic vision, then combine your foundation in studio art and art theory with modern, effective education techniques. For more information on the Wiggins School of Education, visit the Education page here.

Fine Arts

Whether it’s sculpture, oil paint, or mixed media, the Fine Arts concentration is a journey of self-discovery that will teach you how to integrate critical theory into the practical application of your artistic skills to communicate your personal vision. You will build a professional portfolio of your work, culminating in a senior show to showcase your development as an artist.

Graphic Design

From typographical design, page layout, package design, and illustration to web design and web animation, a concentration in Graphic Design will harness and refine your creative energy to prepare you for a career of constant innovation in a rapidly evolving field such as web design, publishing, advertising, or illustration.


The study of photography combines technical training with coursework that will help you define and develop your individual artistic vision. With courses covering composition, lighting, darkroom procedures and digital techniques, this concentration will prepare you for a number of careers, including commercial or studio photography. Depending on where your interests lie, you can tailor your education to fit your strengths and professional goals.

Download the Academic Catalog

For a more detailed explanation of requirements, including course descriptions, download the Academic Catalog.

  • In addition to their degrees, graduates of Coker’s art department often leave with a portfolio, artwork in a competitive show, a resume and an artist’s statement. But being an artist goes beyond the tangible work you create. Artists are flexible, creative, and persistent; they have research skills and understand how to make abstract connections. Artists and designers today aren’t just working in traditional occupations—they’re also working collaboratively with sociologists, engineers, and anthropologists to solve some of the most important problems in our society. At Coker, internship and study away opportunities (such as the popular Art in New York trip) ensure that art students learn to apply their skills in a real-world environment and adapt to a quickly changing workplace. Whatever career you decide to pursue, your creativity, work ethic and problem-solving abilities will facilitate your path to success.

    For more information on potential career paths, click here.

    Examples of alternate career paths you can follow with your art degree:
    • Advertising/Sales/Marketing Rep
    • Archivist
    • Art Appraiser
    • Art Therapist
    • Arts Administrator
    • Curator
    • Designer
    • Editor
    • Educator
    • Historic Preservation Specialist
    • Media Buyer
    • Merchandise Display Coordinator
    • Photographer
    • Promotion/Production Assistant
    • Public Relations Specialist
    • Researcher
    • Retail Buyer
    • Store Manager
    • Textile Designer
    • Advertising Artist
    • Animator
    • Appraiser
    • Architecture Model Builder
    • Art Teacher
    • Art Therapist
    • Arts Administrator
    • Arts Conservator
    • Arts Critic
    • Book Illustrator
    • Buyer
    • Calligrapher
    • Cartoonist
    • Ceramic Artist
    • Cinematographer
    • Corporate Curator
    • Costume Designer
    • Courtroom Sketcher
    • Curatorial Assistant
    • Display/Set Designer
    • Drafter
    • Engraver
    • Exhibit Designer
    • Fashion Coordinator
    • Filmmaker
    • Freelance Artist
    • Game Designer
    • Graphic Artist
    • Illustrator
    • Interior Designer
    • Jewelry Designer
    • Landscape Architect
    • Layout Artist
    • Muralist
    • Nonprofit Administrator
    • Photo Journalist
    • Product Designer
    • Production Assistant
    • Public Relations Coordinator
    • Publications Assistant
    • Restorer
    • Retail Store Art Director
    • Sales Assistant
    • Store Manager
    • Textile Designer
    • Web Designer

Graduates of Coker College have gone on to pursue a graduate degree at a number of institutions, including but not limited to:

  • Minneapolis College of Art and Design
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of South Carolina
  • Savannah College of Art
  • Florida State University
  • University of Cincinnati
  • Northern Illinois University
  • School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

In the Coker art department, professors aren’t lecturers. They are teachers, mentors, and fellow artists. Faculty members are engaged in creating their own artwork as well as teaching, so they remain connected to the creative process and better equipped to guide students through any challenges. As an art student, you will work closely with professors all four years, giving you the highest level of personal guidance and attention.


Professor of Art; Chair of the Art Department; Coordinator of the Art and Art Education Programs
Visiting Assistant Professor of Art
Assistant Professor, Art
Ashley Gillespie
Exhibition Director

Coker College offers Art Scholarships ranging from $500 to $2000 per year, renewable for four years.

To receive an Art Scholarship, you must first apply and be accepted to Coker College. After acceptance, please submit 12-15 original works of art, in as many different media as possible. Portfolios may be submitted as high-resolution JPEGs. 

To be considered for an art scholarship, a high school GPA of B is required. Send digital images and letter of interest in the Art Scholarship to:

Jean GrosserChair Art Department
[email protected] 

Coker College
300 East College Avenue 
Hartsville, SC 29550