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Graphic DesignerCollege Communications and Community RelationsEastfield College
“My sister Susana and I both started taking courses, just the basics, at Eastfield. I really liked the Photoshop class I took in the Digital Media area, and I signed up for the program after that course.
“I started out working in this department part time as a co-op student in 2007. I really like the creativity part of my job, and the design aspect. From being a student, I was already used to meeting deadlines — because all jobs here come in with a deadline. Really, the creativity is limitless in the design work we do. Of course, we also follow graphic design standards, but there is a lot of creative freedom too.
“In my mind, the best part of the program was the instructors. The teachers always encouraged us to be structured and stay organized, and that’s one of the things that really translated to my job — you have to keep track of a lot of files. Because I used that strategy from the very beginning, I can find files really quickly when I need to.
“The instructors were very approachable and were always encouraging us to do more. They would point out different perspectives on the projects we were working on. One of my teachers, Gayla O’Neall, not only was very supportive but helped me find the co-op job where I started working in this department as a student part time. David Danforth also was always showing us the latest things in design, and encouraging us to use them.
“My advice to students starting out in this area? Always keep your eye out for what’s new so that you can build a broader portfolio. You want to catch an employer’s eye by showing them that you know what’s up-to-date. Define your own design style and keep learning all the time. Even though I’m technically through with my studies, that’s what I do — I keep learning all the time.”
Liliana Rodriguez earned two associate degrees from Eastfield College, one in Arts and Sciences and one in Digital Media Technology, as well as Digital Media certificates in Digital Photography and Electronic Pre-Press. She designs posters, flyers, banners and various print material for Eastfield College.