KUCD 2018 Grad, Meredith Heydt — How She balanced Design and Swim Team

Meredith Heydt is just graduated with a BFA in Communication Design here at Kutztown University. We sat down and asked Meredith about being a transfer student, being on swim team, and her design work at KUCD.

KUCD 2018 grad, Meredith Heydt with concentrations in Advertising and Graphic Design.

While at KU, she was a member of the women’s swim team where she was a two-time PSAC Scholar-Athlete. She has served as a student mentor in the Department of Communication Design and has participated in Designathon, a 24 hour event serving local non-profits.

Heydt is the recipient of a coveted Graphis New Talent award and has been a graphic designer with Sorrelli Jewelry since her sophomore year. During senior year she was a design intern at the studio of Joe Bosack, one of the country’s most well respected designers of sports branding.

Let’s go back to the beginning. You were a transfer student, how did your view of graphic design change upon coming to Kutztown University?

I transferred from Lehigh Carbon Community College where I studied graphic design. While there the professors were very quick to hand the students a project and have them fully flesh it out with all the typographic components and graphic elements. I learned to work on my feet and crank out projects with little guidance and very competitive classmates. This was a great way to learn the Adobe Suite quickly but transferring to Kutztown showed me there is more to design than quick solutions. My view of graphic design changed the minute I entered my first core class devoted solely to typography. Never had I thought so much about how a typeface can change a whole design. These important design foundation classes that Kutztown required made me step back and really appreciate good design and aspire to create much better work.

You are a steller athlete! Was it difficult to balance both school and sports?

As a student athlete, I found it rewarding to know I could balance both school and an exhausting sport successfully. I personally liked the challenge of staying organized and hitting deadlines while competing. It was definitely difficult at times to go to practice when you knew you had so much work to do for the next day but it was that mental break that I think made me focus better when I came back to the work after.

What would your advice be to future KUCD students who, also, want to participate in sports?

My advice to future KUCD students who also want to participate in sports would be to find a good balance and test yourself for the first season or even couple weeks and then decide if it’s something you think you can handle. If you find yourself missing deadlines or missing practice to meet deadlines, then maybe that is when you make the decision to let the sport go and focus mainly on your studies. I always told myself “my work in this major is what is going to get me a job – swimming probably won’t.”

What an honor to speak at commencement! What are some of the main points you want to highlight in your speech?

It really has been an honor to be chosen to speak for the student body at graduation this year. Some of the main points I will be highlighting are saying thank you to our faculty and staff for being our new friends and family here at Kutztown. While being away from home and being in a new place is scary, each of the faculty members here have made it their mission to make us feel welcome and at home. I highlight that we, as the graduates, have made it through the toughest times as we journey through the stress of college classes, but we have also made it through some of the best years of our lives; we have checked things off our never-ending bucket list, made new friends, and experienced things we may never experience again. So, to the class of 2018, we made it and thank you.

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation, I will be moving to New York City to work at Concentric Health Experience. Here, I will an art apprentice for 3 months and then move to either Junior Art Director or Project Manager. This agency works with pharmaceutical companies to advertise their products. Working in NYC will help me get my foot in the door of graphic design and advertising and hopefully lead me into the professional sports industry.

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