Meet our new Head of Design, Jennifer Tausch. Tausch is a highly accomplished Branding Visionary and Creative Director with an extensive track record of success delivering the leadership, strategies, and creative insights to propel brands to new levels of performance. 

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A Journey into Design with Jennifer Tausch

Long before becoming Head of Design at the Art Academy of Cincinnati, Jennifer Tausch was a high school kid showing up at the AAC for an afterschool drawing class. She’d been singled out to participate in the high school honors program.

“I’m sixteen and I’m all excited to be there, thinking we’re going to draw apples,” she recalls. “I got there, and it was nude drawing.”

The experience was memorable, but more importantly, it put art school on the radar.

Tausch ended up at the University of Cincinnati DAAP where she discovered the field of Design. That changed everything.

She shifted focus to graphic design, and her hometown opened up in a new way.

“Cincinnati is such a great hub for graphic design, but also for strategic design,” says Tausch.

While working for local product-focused companies such as P&G and LPK, strategy became central to her thinking. She directed creative teams that managed feminine care brands across multiple countries and markets.

“I learned a lot of strategic thinking from industrial designers.”

Around that time, Tausch began teaching strategy classes at the AAC. Then her career took her to New York City and, most recently, Lafayette, Louisiana.

While in Lafayette, Tausch directed the brand and creative team for the largest jewelry manufacturer in North America.

She found herself conducting creative sessions involving gemstones and security guards. And she sent team members to conferences in New York and Chicago, eager to connect them to the broader Design community that she’d benefited from.

Tausch gets excited to see designers connect the dots in new ways. This is one reason she loves working with students.

Now as the AAC Head of Design, Tausch looks forward to helping students discover their paths and learn the tools of the trade through realistic projects and client interactions.

She views the Art Academy of Cincinnati—and its surrounding design community—as fertile ground for learning to think critically and visually communicate your ideas.

“There’s a balance we can strike with the Design program—to be creative problem solvers and conceptualizers, but also having killer technique and hand skills.”

She says it’s also fertile ground for taste-testing different applications and modes of Design. This allows students to learn more about themselves, while building a portfolio that opens doors.

“It’s really about your process, and it’s about your creative thinking,” says Tausch, reflecting on her own Design journey.

Looking back on where that journey began, Tausch can’t help but think of the high school art teacher who saw her potential and got her into the AAC drawing class.

“She said, ‘I think you should be a teacher, and I think you should consider the Art Academy,’” Tausch recalls. “It’s wild.”