What is a Graphic Designer Internship

For aspiring graphic designers, an internship is the best way to get their foot in the door and build valuable connections that could lead to a full-time job. A graphic designer intern usually works under the supervision of an experienced graphic designer that explains the tricks of the trade to them. Interns get to participate in design campaigns and work on projects such as logo redesigns. They gain practical experience with technical tools that many graphic designers use, such as HTML and InDesign. However, interns also need to take care of basic administrative tasks such as communicating with clients and updating databases.

The average salary for a graphic designer internship is $32,215 a year. However, many internships are unpaid or offer only class credit as compensation.

Most graphic designer interns either have a bachelor's degree in graphic design or are college students. Since this is an entry-level position, interns don't need many years of professional experience. However, it helps to have a few graphic design projects in their portfolio to make their application stand out.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Graphic Designer Internship. For example, did you know that they make an average of $18.69 an hour? That's $38,885 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 3% and produce 8,800 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Graphic Designer Internship Do

There are certain skills that many Graphic Designer Interns have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Analytical skills, Artistic ability and Communication skills.

Learn more about what a Graphic Designer Internship does

How To Become a Graphic Designer Internship

If you're interested in becoming a Graphic Designer Internship, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 70.8% of Graphic Designer Interns have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 2.2% of Graphic Designer Interns have master's degrees. Even though most Graphic Designer Interns have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Graphic Designer Internship. When we researched the most common majors for a Graphic Designer Internship, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Associate Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Graphic Designer Internship resumes include High School Diploma degrees or Master's Degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Graphic Designer Internship. In fact, many Graphic Designer Internship jobs require experience in a role such as Graphic Designer. Meanwhile, many Graphic Designer Interns also have previous career experience in roles such as Internship or Sales Associate.

What is the right job for my career path?

Tell us your goals and we'll match you with the right jobs to get there.

And if you’re looking for a job, here are the five top employers hiring now:

  1. Adobe Jobs (11)
  2. Cbs Jobs (15)
  3. Meredith Jobs (13)
  4. The Walt Disney Company Jobs (28)
  5. Ogilvy Jobs (11)
Average Salary
$38,885
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
3%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
129,028
Job Openings
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Graphic Designer Internship Career Paths

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Average Salary for a Graphic Designer Internship

Graphic Designer Interns in America make an average salary of $38,885 per year or $19 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $53,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $28,000 per year.
Average Salary
$38,885
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12 Graphic Designer Internship Resume Examples

Learn How To Write a Graphic Designer Internship Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Graphic Designer Internship resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Graphic Designer Internship Resume Examples And Templates

And if you’re looking for a job, here are the five top employers hiring now:

  1. Adobe Jobs (11)
  2. Cbs Jobs (15)
  3. Meredith Jobs (13)
  4. The Walt Disney Company Jobs (28)
  5. Ogilvy Jobs (11)

Choose From 10+ Customizable Graphic Designer Internship Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Graphic Designer Internship templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Graphic Designer Internship resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Graphic Designer Internship Demographics

Graphic Designer Internship Gender Statistics

female

59.4 %

male

40.6 %

Graphic Designer Internship Ethnicity Statistics

White

76.1 %

Hispanic or Latino

10.2 %

Asian

7.6 %

Graphic Designer Internship Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

47.5 %

French

9.4 %

Chinese

7.7 %
Job Openings

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Graphic Designer Internship Education

Graphic Designer Internship Majors

Graphic Designer Internship Degrees

Bachelors

70.8 %

Associate

21.2 %

High School Diploma

4.0 %

Top Colleges for Graphic Designer Internships

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,465
Enrollment
6,483

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

5. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

6. Northeastern University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,522
Enrollment
13,760

7. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

8. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

9. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

10. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079
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Online Courses For Graphic Designer Internship That You May Like

Graphic Design Mastery: The FULL Branding & Design Process
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Follows the FULL Graphic Design Process for A Company: Logo, Ad, Social Media, T-Shirt, Package, Website Design & More!...

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The Ultimate Graphic Design Course Which Covers Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Design Theory, Branding and Logo Design...

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Top Skills For a Graphic Designer Internship

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 18.7% of Graphic Designer Interns listed Graphic Design on their resume, but soft skills such as Analytical skills and Artistic ability are important as well.

Best States For a Graphic Designer Internship

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a Graphic Designer Internship. The best states for people in this position are Washington, Alaska, Maine, and Rhode Island. Graphic Designer Interns make the most in Washington with an average salary of $62,569. Whereas in Alaska and Maine, they would average $61,104 and $56,920, respectively. While Graphic Designer Interns would only make an average of $55,491 in Rhode Island, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Washington

Total Graphic Designer Internship Jobs:
848
Highest 10% Earn:
$93,000
Location Quotient:
1.75
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Rhode Island

Total Graphic Designer Internship Jobs:
86
Highest 10% Earn:
$69,000
Location Quotient:
1.07
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Maine

Total Graphic Designer Internship Jobs:
91
Highest 10% Earn:
$67,000
Location Quotient:
1.03
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Graphic Designer Interns

How Do Graphic Designer Internship Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

2.0

Graphic designerSeptember 2019

2.0

Zippia Official LogoGraphic designerSeptember 2019

What do you like the most about working as Graphic Designer Internship?

The ability to communicate with letters and images for to me its the loudess means of communication. Show More

What do you NOT like?

I dislike being un-informed or not being informed on time, For information and time is a essential to me. My time is precious. Show More

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Top Graphic Designer Internship Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ Graphic Designer Interns and discovered their number of Graphic Designer Internship opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that The Walt Disney Company was the best, especially with an average salary of $62,957. Indesign, follows up with an average salary of $42,756, and then comes National Multiple Sclerosis Society with an average of $42,918. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a Graphic Designer Internship. The employers include Tesla, New Relic, and Shure

Most Common Employers For Graphic Designer Internship

RankCompanyZippia ScoreAverage Graphic Designer Internship SalaryAverage Salary
1$120,462
2$105,925
3$95,785
4$62,957
5$58,153
6$55,772

Becoming a Graphic Designer Internship FAQs

Do design interns get paid?

Yes, design interns can get paid, although many internships are also unpaid or offer only class credit as compensation. Ultimately, it depends on the industry and company.

The average salary for the average design intern is $38,000 yearly. On the lower end of the salary range, they may only earn around $28,000 and, on the higher end, they may make about $51,000.

Other kinds of design interns, like graphic design interns, can earn an average salary of $44,000 yearly. On the lower end, they may earn around $33,000 and, on the higher end, they may make around $59,000.

Overall, one can expect that the salary may not be very high for a beginner-level job like an internship.

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Do you need an internship to be a graphic designer?

No, you don't need an internship to be a graphic designer, but it is highly encouraged.

Graphic designers often gain their initial experience through internships. It allows aspiring graphic designers to work with veteran designers and experience the design process from concept to completion while completing a design program. Also, some employers prefer to hire an employee directly from their internship program.

In general, many programs provide students with the opportunity to build a professional portfolio of their designs. For many artists, having a portfolio--a collection of design ideas that demonstrates their styles and abilities--is essential because employers rely heavily on a designer's portfolio in deciding whether to hire the individual.

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How do I get a graphic design internship with no experience?

To get a graphic design internship with no experience is generally okay as the point of an internship is to help you gain professional experience.

However, what would be helpful is to have postsecondary education and relevant skills and abilities in the field.

Most graphic designer interns are typically college students with either a bachelor's degree in graphic design, fine arts, or design and visual communication. Since this is an entry-level position, interns don't need many years of professional experience.

However, it helps to have a few graphic design projects in their portfolio to make their application stand out. For artists like graphic designers, developing a portfolio--a collection of design ideas that demonstrates their styles and abilities--is essential because employers rely heavily on it to decide whether to hire or not.

Additionally, showing that you have technical skills and knowledge in industry-related tools is helpful. For example, skills in Adobe Creative Suite, photography, and typography.

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How do graphic designers get college internships?

Graphic designers get college internships by being current college students or being recent college graduates and applying for school-sponsored internship programs that hire graphic designers.

In general, an internship is not required to be a graphic designer, but many companies often hire directly from their internship programs. Additionally, most employers prefer a bachelor's degree in graphic design, fine arts, or design and visual communication and have a strong portfolio.

Overall, college students can build their portfolios and also get internships while earning their degrees. Internships can be year-long or just during the summer, depending on the company. Also, interns can get paid through a salary or compensated through college credits. Some internships may not be paid at all.

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What does a design intern do?

A design intern gains real-world experience working in design. This can include graphic design, UX design, interior design, or other related design fields.

Depending on the design field chosen, many of the specific tasks of the internship will vary greatly. Design interns typically shadow professionals in the design field of their choice while being responsible for small tasks and projects, like various aspects of social media management.

All design interns must be creative collaborators and effective communicators with an eye for detail and design. They are usually college or university students in a degree-earning design program or related field.

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