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Graphic design students get up-close look at workplaces; portfolio show set for April 27

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LINCOLN – Students in the graphic design program at Northeast Community College received a preview of their future careers during a visit to Lincoln recently.

The students visited the offices of three organizations in Lincoln, including communications agency Swanson Russell; Firespring, a marketing, print and software company; and Sandhills Publishing, an information processing company that creates trade publications and hosted websites.

Phil Schimonitz, graphic design instructor and organizer of the trip, said he wanted to introduce his students to what he believed were three highly diverse design-related businesses in Lincoln.

“I like that kind of exposure. I think that it’s these kind of things that help students envision where they’re going. Because they go to class, and they know their instructor, but they may not know the field itself, the workplaces. It was interesting to see their reactions to each business.”

Schimonitz said each workplace the group visited had a distinct culture, whether it was a formal or casual dress code, or an upbeat energy versus a more focused, serious one.

Student Derrick Praeuner, Norfolk, said the trip to Lincoln gave him many ideas, not only for his future career, but the work he’s doing in his classes right now.

“I have a little more direction now and a target of what I want to be able to do. I know what I want to put in (my portfolio) now and what I want to work to get better at.”

He said he’d recommend any college graduate, regardless of their program of study, to visit a potential employer to experience the culture surrounding the work itself.

“Go find a place related to your field and ask if you can get shown around so you’re not lost. You don’t want to jump into a job and three or six months down the line, realize ‘this isn’t really right for me.’ Just check out the place and don’t be afraid to ask to see it, really experience it.”

Northeast graphic design students will be showcasing their work during the program’s 10th annual portfolio show soon. The event will be held Saturday, April 27, from 1-4 p.m. in Room 100B of the Maclay Building on Northeast’s Norfolk campus.

The portfolio show will feature the students’ best and favorite projects they completed during their program of study. Students showcasing their work include Hannah Frederick, Yankton, SD; Sabrina Hempel, Long Pine; Ferron Karlin, Columbus; Emily Maneely, Leigh; Brathe Myers, Merna; and Jeffery Reynolds, Newport.

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Graphic design students get up-close look at workplaces; portfolio show set for April 27