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I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, thanks

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  • I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, thanks

    Hello, I do mostly impo work right now. I do not have a degree in graphic arts and desperately need to freshen up my learning curve some. My local community college is offering somethig new for the fall semester. It's called "Graphics Design Career skillset" comrising of the following classes: Color Theory; Photo Imaging Editing I and II; Electronic Publishing; Intro to Graphic Design; Corporate Design; Graphic Design and Produuction; Typography; and Portfolio Development. The price is $3500 (US dollars) and comes with a certificate of completion (no liscensing or certificate). Would taking these classes make me more hire-able, do you think? Right now, as I've said before, my pay is $7.00 per hour. Thank you very much for your input! I especially would like to hear from those who do the hiring for their company.

  • #2
    Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, thanks

    Seriously--what kind of education is helpful for a pre-press worker? Not too many educational opportunities come my way, so I desperately need some advice.

    I wasn't sure where to place this thread....

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    • #3
      Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

      Well okay, I guess I'll jump in here. First off you say you mostly do impo work and I assume maybe make some plates by your screen name and you are presently making $7.00 per hour. First off you are grossly underpaid. A platemaker where I work starts out at $10.00 per hour and I'm not in a high income area. Our top plategirl makes around $14.00 per hour.

      As far as classes go I've always been underwhelmed and unimpressed by what the local community college has to offer in the way of prepress skills. I've found they are of some value if you are wanting to learn design but rarely do they teach you anything in the way of prepress troubleshooting and output. We usually have to completely train new hires that have went through the local community college courses. About the only thing good I can say about those people is that at least they've seen Quark, InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator and can open the program. After that they aren't much help until they've been trained. And $3500 is no drop in the bucket. If I needed help in prepress and you applied, your impo and plate experience would count more than the local community college classes. I'd say to look for a new job using the experience you have. Unless you are wanting to get into the design aspect of the trade. Then the classes might help you somewhat. In this trade I've always felt you can't beat the real work experience but someone has to give you a chance to get it.

      Good luck.
      Joe
      OS: Mac OS X 10.10.2 - RIP: Prinergy Connect 6.1 - CTP: Luscher XPose! 160 (2)

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      • #4
        Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

        Thank you Joe.

        Yea, I can hear what you're saying about the local CC's, since in all that so-called "skillset" there wasn't a single class in there dealing with what I'd term "the real world". Not one class on troubleshooting, or how graphic arts ties in with printing. Another guy (who owns a shop) thinks I'd be better off in Web design or something similiar. More helpful? I dunno. Web design's not my forte, but I'm reaching into middle age with a banana peel under one foot, and shifting sands, under the other.

        All I know is, the only help wanted ads in the papers ask for workers with graphic design experience (to run a digital press), and with my lack of real experience on design software, I fear I'd be seen as a liability, so matter what my resume says. Of course, there's more printing jobs out there, but not many, not like it used to be.

        At work I use Quark on a regular basis, but am not an expert on it by any means. Like you point out (and ain't it true!), a lot of the problem lies in just getting my foot in the door; though most interviewers would be loath to admit it, it's the kids (35 and under) who'd get their second look...

        (As for doing "some plate work", in your shop, don't the platemakers impo their own work?? I do impo, but also do the plates. Just wondering?)

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        • #5
          Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

          > {quote:title=plategirl wrote:}{quote}

          > (As for doing "some plate work", in your shop, don't the platemakers impo their own work?? I do impo, but also do the plates. Just wondering?)


          Nope. the platemakers only make the plates. Prepress does the imposing.
          Joe
          OS: Mac OS X 10.10.2 - RIP: Prinergy Connect 6.1 - CTP: Luscher XPose! 160 (2)

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          • #6
            Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

            i would agree with Joe
            I went through a full-fledged arts program at a fully-accredited university and got a BFA in graphic design, but still couldn't use any program with great efficiency (maybe it was my school and that i graduated in '96).
            OJT in prepress (not plate-making), seeing how 100 different designers put things together and working out the bugs in each one has been worth 20x what i learned in college.
            College art experience may teach you how to see a pretty picture, and make a pretty picture, but it won't teach you how to get a pretty picture to work.

            I think it would be more worthwhile to attend a real university (or even a state college) and take Intro to Design I & II and a few other interesting 2-D classes to learn how to see good design and understand color more thoroughly. Then get OJT experience with the desktop applications doing pre-press.

            my 2ยข

            best of luck

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

              I took several courses at a local community college several years back, but they were more for specific apps, like Quark, Photoshop and Illustrator.
              No design, no color theory.
              Just how to make folders, how to open the apps, where the tools are and what they do.
              After that, it was jump in and go to work, OJT.

              So, in my opinion, you may gain some knowledge, but don't count on it to be the "do all end all".
              and 3500US is really too much for what they actually teach you in those classes. In most, they don't have the budget for the newer software packages, so they end up teaching you on old stuff.

              but, that's my opinion
              cheers and good luck

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

                Good for your on wanting to train. As far a community college's go I find that they don't teach you nearly what you need to know. They are usually behind in software etc. I would recommend trying prepresstraining.com and lynda.com two on line software training companies. My guys use both of these. At least this will get your feet wet. One guy I hired used prepresstraining intensely and is really good with software. As far as learning about offset printing, I am a hands on person. New people are good at software, but really need to learn from those who have ink and paper experience and I don't know off hand were to learn that.
                good luck

                by the way you are so underpaid.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

                  Don't mean to sound rude and please don't take this wrong. Your profile states you have 20 years of combined prepress experience and are making only $7.00 per hour?????? I guess I am confused about how that came to be. Is it a typo and you make 17.00?

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                  • #10
                    Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, thanks

                    skip the training, buy a computer and the software. do some design and layout on your own. get the computer training dvd .
                    at least when your done you'll still have the computer.

                    here in my state the minimum wage is $7.50

                    I pay people that don't listen to a word I say $8.50.

                    and we are in a low wage area

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, tha

                      Ah, no. Not a typo.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: I could use some input as to helpfulness of these college classes, thanks

                        Buy a computer and teach myself, eh? You know, I just might do that! Thanks for the input, people.

                        Comment

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