Monday, January 12, 2009

Art Institute Grads Display Portfolios

Regina Cortez with some of the work she did while earning her associate degree in Graphic Design from The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. She was one of nine students earning a degree in December and presenting their work at a portfolio review.

(SAN BERNARDINO, Calif.) The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire hosted its first Graduate Portfolio Exhibit on December 18th.

“This was a great opportunity for our nine graduating students to showcase their work, especially to employers, but also to friends and family,” said Cindy Jones, Director of Career Services for The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire.

“The students not only had a chance to display their work, but also were able to discuss their concepts to an audience,” said Jones.

All Graphic Design students maintain portfolios of their college work while at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. These portfolios are now complete for Raysa Cerna, Anthony Guevara and Rachel Makowski, who are receiving the program’s first bachelor’s degrees and for Regina Cortez, Elizabeth Horn, and Salvador Vazquez Jr., who are receiving associate degrees.

Some of the employers in attendance included: The Inland Empire Weekly, Think Tank Design, Dameron Communications, SBL and Manila Design.

Jim Saunders an ad salesman for Inland Empire Weekly was especially impressed with the work of Raysa Cerna. She designed a wrap for his car that advertises the Inland Empire Weekly and worked on a cover for the paper as well.

Carl Dameron, Creative Director of Dameron Communications attended the show and felt it was very beneficial to employers, “not only getting a chance to network with students who are highly motivated and creative but allowing students to explain their creative vision behind their work.”

Dameron was impressed with Cortez’s recruitment campaign for tutoring services, which included prints of her work of children’s book cover ideas, Ed Hardy clothing advertisement ideas, expression-type posters and Young Bellys Maternity stationary ideas.

Cortez said, “This experience helped me to keep conversations going.” She was able to network with employers like Manila Graphic and Dameron Communications. Her plan is to go back to school at the Art Institute of California- Inland Empire for her Bachelor’s Degree, to refine her knowledge and education in graphic design. Cortez plans on working freelance while in school.

Guevara displayed his work including print pictures, editorial advertisements, posters, packages, and brochures.

“The show was actually a really fun event. It gave us a chance to show the community what we are made of. It was nice to hear what employers had to say, with different viewpoints, said Guevara. “It was a nice finish.”

Guevara is applying for a job at Homes and Land Magazine, doing editorial layouts.

Hors d’ouvres and beverages were served during the event. Ronnell Lawson and Roberto Vazquez Pulido, who are the first two students to obtain Culinary Arts degrees from the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of California – Inland Empire, created some of the hors d’ouvres as samples of their work.

The International Culinary School opened in January 2007, a year after the first programs began at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. Lawson and Vazquez Pulido earned their associate degrees in less than two years, in part by taking advantage of a year-round schedule their school offers.

Raymond Heredia, the first graduate of The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire’s Web Design & Interactive Media program, displayed Web sites he has created on display. He is receiving a bachelor’s degree, having also taken advantage of the year-round schedule to complete his education in less than three years.

The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire held this event for the first time because this is the first quarter the three-year-old campus has had multiple graduates. Plans are already underway for the Graduate Portfolio Review to become a quarterly tradition in 2009. Similar events are planned in March, June, September and December of next year.

“We anticipate 20 to 28 graduates for the winter quarter, which ends in March,” Jones said. “Our numbers of graduates are growing and could reach more than 100 per quarter a year from now.”

The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire offers Bachelor of Science degrees in Game Art & Design, Culinary Management, Graphic Design, Web Design & Interactive Media, Interior Design, Fashion Design and Retail Management, and Media Arts & Animation. There are also Associate of Science degrees in Graphic Design and Culinary Arts. Each program is offered on a year-round basis, allowing students to work uninterrupted toward their degrees.

It’s not too late to start classes at The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire. Courses begin Feb. 19 and classes are offered in the day, evening and on weekends for new and reentry students.

For more information or a tour, call The Art Institute of California – Inland Empire at (909) 915-2100.
The Art Institute of California-Inland Empire is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 40 education institutions throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals.