SVA Masters in Branding

Debbie co-founded the world’s first graduate program in branding at the School of Visual Arts in New York City in 2009 with Steven Heller. The program is the first of its kind in the United States, and is a one-year graduate degree that examines the relationship between design and strategy, and the power of design thinking as a way to combine creative skills with the problem-solving and decision-making processes of design and business. Now in its 13th year, the program has achieved international acclaim. The inaugural class wrote and designed the Rockport book Brand Bible: The Complete Guide to Building, Designing and Sustaining Brands, in 2013 the students created the branding for the Museum of Modern Art’s retail program, Destination: New York, the class of 2015 worked to reposition a Kappa Middle School in Harlem, the class of 2016 rebranded Mariska Hargitay’s Joyful Heart Foundation, the class of 2017 worked with Kholsa Ventures, Performance Space New York and Chobani Incubators, and the class of 2018 worked with Brian Koppelman to design a logo for the television show Billions. The class of 2021, along with selected alumni, created the design of the 2022 Sundance Institute Film Festival.