From Screen to Reality

Graphic design students work for clients

Aaron Melville, Copy Editor

Every year, the graphic design class taught by Sawyer Wade does projects to gain real world experience including meeting deadlines, communicating with clients, and creating the best possible design they can. But this year, students said there was one specific project that stood out not only to them but to anyone who has heard about it. 

The graphic design class was asked this year to help design a logo for Radmer Construction, a small construction company owned by Eric Radmer, a teacher at the Columbia Area Career Center. Students designed logos, business cards, letterhead papers and envelopes to have only one be chosen as the final design. 

Graphic Design at Battle has had several of these projects, but Wade said working with an actual company is a feature of this class that most others don’t get. “We have a lot of connections,” Wade said, regarding his students ability to work with real companies. “If a company needs a logo, they’ll say ‘Let’s see if the Career Center has some students to help us with this,’ so we kind of just network with companies.”

Wade noted that this opens opportunities for students to get real world experience while also earning a grade, even internships with companies in the community. “Sometimes the client has a system where the student with the chosen design will get paid, or another prize of some sort,” Wade said.

Students in Wade’s class said they feel strongly about the work they do and the opportunities they have, which also spills over into projects within Battle High School.

Isaiah Dollinger, a senior in the Graphic Design class, said, “The projects we’re given show an approach on how the real world of graphic design works.” 

Dollinger added that he enjoys the class and is excited for his future projects. “I’m currently working on designs for True/False Film Festival T-Shirts and the ‘I Voted’ sticker for the 2020 Election for Boone County.” 

According to Wade, “the focus of the Career Center is for students to gain real world experience,” with deadlines and penalties included if they aren’t able to make the date. “It prepares them for life after high school, and it also prepares them for college where if they miss the deadline, they may not have the chance to make it up,” Wade said. 

Collin Riley, a sophomore in the Graphic Design class, said, “It was really interesting to find out how businesses get their designs and getting the experience along with it, especially with how the design process plays into it.” 

Wade said he is happy with the students’ performance. “They surprise me all of the time, coming up with many variations of designs like logos for companies. It’s just like ‘wow, I would’ve never come up with that.’” 

Students like Dollinger are also satisfied with what they’re doing in the class. “I feel more comfortable with my designs and getting myself out there with this experience I am getting,” Dollinger said.