Our program provides an innovative look at the relationship between design, branding, science and strategy, and focuses on how students can use learned skills to generate and sustain new market opportunities.
Debbie Millman
Chair

Contemporary culture is now almost entirely composed of brands. Everything we consume—even the most basic commodities, like water and salt—are brands. Experiences are brands. People are brands. Our role models are people, and thus our role models have become brands. Brands are so persuasive in their personal, political, economic, aesthetic, psychological, moral, ethical and social consequences that they leave no part of us untouched, unaffected and unaltered. Any knowledge of culture is impossible now without an understanding of the implications of “brand.” We have entered a day and age where brand is an extension of human facility, whether it is psychic or psychological.


Rarely are design, branding and strategy discussed in terms of a synergistic relationship in academia. There are design schools and there are business schools, but there is no one academic environment that comprises a rigorous, robust education of the intersection of design and business in the art and science of branding. The world’s first-ever masters in branding is the only program in the world which offers a unique opportunity to pioneer the examination of the relationship between design and strategy, and the power of brand thinking as a way to combine creative skills with the problem-solving and decision-making processes of design and business.

Why We Stand Out:
  • Create frameworks to guide brand, design and business development

  • Critically evaluate brand, business, marketing and design strategies

  • Master the intellectual link between leadership and creativity

More About the Department

The Master of Professional Studies is a one-year graduate degree program 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.

It is the first program of its kind in the United States and offers its students a unique opportunity to study with some of the most accomplished branding experts working today.

Students graduating from this program will be able to take advantage of new market opportunities, and to deliver innovative, successful and sustainable project outcomes in the worlds of design, advertising, marketing and business.


During the year, students develop an understanding of diverse branding strategies, brand valuation and brand development life cycles. Students will explore important themes in behavioral science and relevant cultural themes as they relate to branding. We will investigate marketing challenges involved in creating and sustaining brands and gain an understanding of corporate-level discourse. The required course work for this degree program will be organized into five progressive segments: culture, behavior, business, commerce and creative. Each discipline will work both independently and cohesively with the others, but rigorous attention will be paid to each field to determine and define the modern practice of branding.