Leslie Miller is a new assistant professor of art this year. Miller graduated from Olivet Nazarene University in Illinois with a focus on graphic design.

Art may not have been Miller’s first choice of study, but art eventually chose her.

“I first chose to study art in middle school when I realized I was not very good at singing,” Miller said.

Miller’s choice to pursue art was also influenced by a high school teacher.

“He wanted to give back to the students,” Miller said. “I want to be the same way he was with my students.”

Miller knew art was a career for her. “As far back as I can remember, art has been a part of me,” Miller said. “Coming from a small Christian college, [coming to Goshen College] felt comfortable to me.”

However, this is Miller’s first teaching position. Miller felt the need to work before teaching, so she worked at several advertisement agencies and as a marketing manager. Miller also started her own freelance design business about 5 years ago, which helps her to stay “fresh” in graphic design. Owning the business helps her incorporate the aspects of owning a small business with her graphic design and marketing opportunities, Miller said.

As for Goshen College, Miller hopes to take the graphic design program to the next level. She said she wants to help students find real jobs, enabling them to have portfolio pieces from real clients. In providing this real world experience, Miller said she hopes to help students incorporate the communication aspect of art into their education.

To Miller, graphic design is about “surviving in the market.” Miller hopes students will not only learn the art of graphic design, but learn what it means to make a vocation for life.