Students gather in the main gallery during the annual OHSAI event.


Develop new skills in an environment designed for personal and creative discovery. Whether you're a passionate painter, a skilled sculptor or just beginning to explore your options, USD's art program will help you use your artistic talents in whatever career you choose.

Why Study Art?

As an art major at USD, you'll join a creative community of artists that will come alongside you as you expand your skills. Here, you'll learn from outstanding faculty, participate in workshops with internationally renowned artists and designers, get hands-on experience through internships and community projects, contribute to galleries and create your own art in our exceptional studio spaces. These are just a few of the experiences that will position you for success in the art world.

If you're passionate about ceramics, painting, printmaking, graphic design/multimedia, photography or sculpture, a degree from USD will provide you with the training, facilities and opportunities you need to launch your career. Share your creativity with the world as an art major at USD.                                                                                            

Degrees & Offerings

Art (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

The BFA in art is a four-year degree program focusing on art or design, balanced with general studies and art history. 

You will choose one of six specializations: ceramics, painting, graphic design/multimedia, photography or sculpture. 

Art: Ceramics (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

Art: Graphic Design (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

Art: Painting (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

Art: Photography (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

Art: Printmaking (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

Art: Sculpture (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus


  Vermillion Main Campus and Sioux Falls

With an art minor, you can choose a single studio emphasis or take a combination of studio courses to achieve a wide range of art experiences.

Art History

  Vermillion Main Campus

Boost your knowledge of art's place in various cultures with a minor in art history.

Program Details







Known for Excellence

With qualities like small class sizes, specialized programs and incredible student opportunities, USD is not your typical university. What makes us unique is what makes your education exceptional.

Student Opportunities

As a student at USD, the opportunities available to you extend beyond the classroom. Explore your interests, find your community and experience your education to the fullest extent through the following opportunities.

Join like-minded students in sharing the importance of art with the surrounding community. Previous SAA activities include hosting exhibitions, working with the Vermillion Area Arts Council on special projects and holding technical skills workshops.

Join SAA

This local chapter of a national graphic art organization collaborates with local businesses to create design projects, giving members hands-on experience in designing for real companies.

Follow AIGA on Facebook

Follow AIGA on Instagram

Attend meetings, national conferences and exhibitions through Sculpture Club. Members work to fund projects and strive to bring sculpture to USD and Vermillion, while creating a community of their own.
Bring the art of printmaking to the larger Vermillion community with this student organization, which offers opportunities to attend exhibits and national conferences.

Departments & Facilities

Explore the departments, facilities and centers that contribute to your education in the only College of Fine Art in the state.
Students in an art gallery


The Department of Art will provide you with unique and applicable real-world experience and connections that enable you to immerse yourself in an environment built for personal and creative discovery.

faculty and staff

Get to know the faculty and staff in the Department of Art. Our faculty are experts in their field, contributing research and scholarship in art education, the history of art, photography, sculpture and much more.
Bio Image for Faculty Member Cory Knedler

Cory Knedler



Art Education
Bio Image for Faculty Member John Banasiak

John Banasiak



Bio Image for Faculty Member Young Ae Kim

Young Ae Kim



Graphic Design, UX & UI, and Immersive Design
Bio Image for Faculty Member Christopher Meyer

Christopher Meyer

Associate Professor


Bio Image for Faculty Member Michael Hook

Michael Hook



Printmaking, Painting, Drawing, Mixed Media
Bio Image for Faculty Member Amber Hansen

Amber Hansen

Assistant Professor


Bio Image for Faculty Member James Quigley

James Quigley

Assistant Professor


Graphic Design, letterpress printing
Bio Image for Faculty Member Erin Wohletz

Erin Wohletz

Assistant Professor


Bio Image for Faculty Member Liz Heeren

Liz Heeren

Senior Lecturer


Art Foundations, Painting
Bio Image for Faculty Member Carol Geu

Carol Geu

Senior Lecturer
Bio Image for Faculty Member Ariadne Albright

Ariadne Albright

Adjunct Instructor
USD art students work on a mural in downtown Vermillion

Gain Hands-On Experience

Through internships and practicums, you can gain experience with notable organizations and events. In addition, the University Art Galleries provide opportunities for hands-on experiences ranging from curating exhibitions across campus to working with the permanent collection. You may also be interested in getting involved in the community though art design projects with local businesses and city projects and exhibitions with the Vermillion Area Arts Council.

Explore University Art Galleries
A student rock climbing in a foreign country.

Your Adventure Awaits

Earn your art history credits over spring break! Our students have participated in exhibitions and faculty-led programs around the world, and our USD alumni help make those experiences affordable.

Consider a trip to New York City to experience art on display as it was meant to be experienced or the art and architecture of Italy. Study abroad opportunities give you a chance to enhance your coursework through cultural immersion.


Learn More
A USD art student showcasing her gallery to a small crowd.

Oscar Howe Institute

Students connect with faculty, create professional contacts and build life long friendships with other artists.


The OHSAI is open to high school students with a demonstrated interest in the visual arts and American Indian culture.


Explore the Oscar Howe Summer Art Institute

Surprisingly Affordable

USD offers low tuition rates for in-state and out-of-state students, as well as scholarships, financial aid and employment opportunities to help make your education even more affordable.

Undergraduate Tuition & Costs

Learn more about tuition and fees for undergraduate students and see how your out-of-pocket costs at USD compare to those at other colleges and universities. Visit the Undergraduate Tuition & Costs Detailed page for program specific costs and fees. 

Financial Aid

Navigating options for how to pay for college can be challenging, but you are not alone. The Office of Financial Aid will work with you and your family to explore how you can make your college education even more affordable.


USD awards nearly $9.5 million in scholarships each year. View our scholarships to see which ones you may qualify for and how you can apply.

hear from our students

Success story Levi Sternberg smiling.
USD has outstanding amenities, inspiring faculty, and a beautiful community. USD should be the first choice for anyone who wants to study art in South Dakota.

Levi Sternburg

BFA Art Education, Sculpture '22
Brandon, SD

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