A Day in the Life of a PRISM Graphic Designer


Ever wonder what it’s like to be a part of the PRISM team?  Meet Mary-Louise Wang, PRISM Graphic designer and Creative Director. Mary-Louise is a veteran PRISMite with valuable experience under her belt to help launch her into the real world beyond Virginia Tech. 

What is it like being a graphic designer for PRISM as well as a full-time student?

“Being a designer for PRISM is a unique opportunity. We as students get to work with clients, as well as students in other majors. Because our designers “float’ between accounts, we’re constantly getting new projects from different clients. It’s also quite rewarding in the sense that all of material we design actually gets used. So you get to see the TV announcement you designed being circulated in the Pamplin atrium, or the mailer you designed being sent out to every high school student accepted to Virginia Tech’s business school, etc. It definitely has its challenges some days but it’s absolutely doable. With a little bit of time management and planning, it’s not hard to stay on top of things. It also helps that all of our clients understand everyone in PRISM are students, and most clients are happy to work with us and be flexible whenever necessary.”

What has been one of the most rewarding experiences you’ve had in your position? 

“I have two neat experiences that come to mind. One of my favorite design opportunities was designing a Snapchat geofilter for Gobblerfest that promoted PRISM.. Thanks to our analytic and accounts team, they tracked the data and were able to tell me that it got over 2000 views. It was really fun being able to see my design snap chatted to me by my friends, and also knowing that it reached 2129 people.

One of my other cool PRISM experiences was getting the opportunity to go to NYC for a 5 day trip — all expenses paid. While there, we visited 8 different agencies that some of our alumni currently work at and got to make connections with some of the top agencies in the U.S. These companies are businesses that I never thought I would be able to get a “foot in the door” with. “

What’s your major? What are your hopes for after college? Do you think PRISM will help you get there?

“I am studying Visual Communication Design (graphic design). I hope to get a job at an agency or firm specializing in either branding or environmental graphics. PRISM has already helped me land a few internships because of the experience as well as connections. During the interview for my internship I got last summer with Gensler (one of the largest global design firms), I was able to talk about PRISM and the opportunities it has given me. All of the designers interviewing me were genuinely impressed that I already had those experiences. They told me they wished that was something they could’ve been exposed to in undergrad. So yes, I think PRISM will definitely help me get where I want to be after college whether it’s through connections or just having those experiences under my belt. “

What kind of opportunities does this position give you? 

“PRISM has lots of opportunities for everyone in the organization that wants to put effort into it. “You reap what you sow” and I think that’s absolutely true for anyone in PRISM. As a graphic designer (and really any career path too), it’s all about networking and that is something PRISM does best. We have a huge spread of PRISM alumni all over the US who love to stay connected and help other students achieve their goals. PRISM also does several agency visit trips each year (NYC, D.C., Richmond, just to name a few) which is really beneficial for us as designers. Lastly, there are a lot of opportunities for leadership, which is not only great for personal development, but also a solid resume builder.”

PRISM has so much to offer, and we are looking for skilled students to add to our amazing team and vast network. To learn more about what we are about and how you can become apart of a social media revolution, visit our website at vtprism.org. Apply today!