Woodbury University President, Dr. David Steele-Figueredo has named Sue Vessella, Dean of the School of Media, Culture & Design. Vessella will lead eight diverse educational programs at the epicenter of creative transformation in Southern California.
“Sue has overseen the growth of MCD since her interim appointment in July 2015, with three of its undergraduate programs now ranked in the top 25 colleges and universities nationwide,” said Randy Stauffer, Senior VP of Academic Affairs. “She’s been an energetic, inspirational leader of the School, and has the vision to cultivate innovative learning opportunities in an interdisciplinary environment.”
The School of Media, Culture & Design is a thriving, dynamic school with the special mission of educating the next generation of creative professionals. It offers eight undergraduate degrees in the fields of animation, communication, fashion design, filmmaking, game art and design, graphic design, media technology and psychology. Students are encouraged to explore the areas between and around these disciplines as they develop their personal vision and professional paths. For instance, Graphic Design students might select a consumer behavior course in psychology to better understand the factors that influence purchasing decisions, or Game Art & Design students might connect with Media Technology to understand the logic and muscle that powers their games.
“I am truly honored by this appointment and look forward to working with my distinguished colleagues in advancing the University’s mission, creating enriching opportunities for the School of Media, Culture & Design, and supporting our students in reaching their full potential in the global community,” said Vessella.
A member of the Woodbury family for more than 25 years, Vessella has also served as Associate Dean of MCD, Chair of the Graphic Design department, and Director of Educational Effectiveness and Assessment for the university. A published author in the area of design education, she has lectured at both international and national design, educational, and administrative conferences, on topics including interdisciplinary pedagogy, educational assessment, social responsibility in design, and assessment in the arts.
Combining her background in educational assessment and information design, Vessella has developed an assessment alignment system for the higher education community entitled AssessAbility©. As professor of Graphic Design, she has taught courses in Typography, Graphic Design, Professional Practice, Package Design, Portfolio Presentation, Advertising, Logo and Identity Design, Environmental Graphics, Design Elements, and Color Theory.
Specializing in corporate identity systems and information design, Vessella also has a background in advertising, identity design, and environmental graphics, and has designed promotional material for numerous companies including NBC Sports, The Los Angeles Zoo, Orion Pictures, Southern California Committee for the Olympic Games, The City of Beverly Hills, Caesar’s Palace and Casino, and multiple entertainment companies. Both an educator and award-winning designer, she has been a Creative Director for national companies, working in the area of identity design and restaurant merchandising.