Student Experience at College of San Mateo
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Student Experience
Stephen Schmidt
Stephen Schmidt Graphic Designer, Creative Director

A.A. degree, Graphic Arts, CSM
B.A. degree, Design, San Jose State University

Stephen Schmidt’s career path, which began in graphic design classes at CSM, has catapulted him to become an award-winning book designer and creative director of his own graphic design company.

Entering CSM as an undeclared major, Stephen says, “CSM was a good, practical starting point for my higher education studies.” During his two years at the college, he came to the conclusion that graphic design was a good career fit. According to Stephen, the counseling he received at CSM proved to be helpful in planning his course load and direction. Stephen comments, “Attending Ed Seubert’s graphic design courses, in particular, provided me with excitement for and knowledge of graphic design as well as the required skills it would take to excel in that field.”

“The nurturing environment and diversity of course offerings gave me confidence that I could develop skills that would allow me to get a good job. Also, I made many good friends while attending CSM.”

In addition to classroom learning, Stephen realized that at CSM, he also was learning to be a good student and his grade point average soared well beyond that which he earned in high school. Consequently, he graduated from CSM with highest honors, earning an associate degree in graphic design (now referred to as “digital media.”)

“My accomplishments at CSM made it possible for me to transfer to San Jose State University (SJSU) to further my graphic design studies.” He continued his academic success as a transfer student at SJSU where he earned a bachelor’s degree in design, and again earning honors.

Today Stephen is the principal and creative director of his own graphic design company, Duuplex, which focuses on brand identity, web and mobile user interface design and book design. He has given back to the profession by mentoring several graphic design interns, from CSM and other design programs; he has also taught Photoshop and HTML classes in San Mateo’s Adult School program. Among his accomplishments is having designed over 20 illustrated coffee table books, including Photo by Sammy Davis, Jr. which was awarded a First Place Photography Book prize in the New York Book Show.