The contest challenges Nevada’s high school artists to create official Welcome to Nevada signs.

Nevada’s welcome signs are about to get a complete refresh thanks to a Welcome to Nevada Design Contest. The contest challenges Nevada’s high school artists to create official Welcome to Nevada signs that depict the Nevada brand and create a friendly welcome for travelers.

“Our Welcome to Nevada signs provide a critical first touchpoint for our visitors and residents returning home,” said Governor Brian Sandoval. “The current signs are outdated and do not offer a consistent look. It’s important to ensure everyone has a warm greeting that conveys the vibrant brand that is the New Nevada.”

The Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, under the direction of Gov. Sandoval and in partnership with the Department of Education and the Department of Transportation, is administering the contest slated to begin March 1, 2016 and run through April 25, 2016.

“Engaging young Nevadans enrolled in Career and Technical Education (CTE) graphic arts programs in creating the design for the welcome signs provides a tremendous opportunity to showcase the CTE program, highlight the creativity of these young people and jump-start careers,” said Michael Raponi, director of the Office of Career Readiness, Adult Learning & Education Options, Nevada Department of Education. “Nevada’s CTE curriculum offers young people a solid foundation for building job skills and this contest will challenge students in a real-world environment.”

The contest will be conducted within Nevada’s high schools and is primarily aimed at students enrolled in the CTE Level 2 or higher graphic arts courses, although each school may determine eligibility.

Approximately 50 entry points exist on Nevada’s major interstate freeways, state highways and small roadways bringing people into the state. Because of the natural and cultural diversity of the state, the entry points will be divided into four regions. Designers are asked to convey the most important resources of the selected region while conveying the overarching brand, Nevada: A World Within. A State Apart., in their designs.

Because the entry signs are an important component of the state’s identity, the designs must be guided by elements of the Nevada: A World Within. A State Apart. brand. Entrants will be provided a toolkit with specific components that need to be included.

“These young people have quite a challenge with having to convey the brand elements, the specific regional cultural and natural resources and welcome travelers all in a limited space,” said Claudia Vecchio, director of the Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs. “We look forward to seeing how these young people incorporate the brand and perceive the state through the design of the signs.”

Each participating school will select up to five finalist designs that will be submitted to a review committee composed of professional graphic artists and representatives from the Department of Transportation, Department of Education and Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs. Three finalists from each region will be selected, at which point the public will be able to choose the winning design via an online voting tool.

Once the winning design is selected for each region, the student designer and his or her instructor will work with the Department of Transportation to finalize the design and produce the sign. The winning designs will be installed on Nevada’s roadways beginning in the summer of 2016.

For more information and contest rules, please visit travelnevada.com/pages/2016-sign-contest.