Graphic and Visual Design

The Graphic and Visual Design program is a Chapter 74 approved, competency-based program certified by Print Ed and is aligned with the Massachusetts Department of Education Vocational Technical Education Frameworks–Arts & Communications Service Cluster. Graphic and Visual Design prepares students for the visual design field using state of the art digital imaging, illustration, and page layout software and equipment, students learn to apply their creativity to real-life or simulated projects. Print ED is a national accreditation program based on industry standards for graphic communications courses of study at the secondary and post-secondary levels and is a component of the Graphic Arts Education and Research Foundation (GAERF®). Students are assessed on industry standard competencies developed by Print ED.

This program introduces students to theory and practical aspects of the design and commercial printing industry and allows students to explore and develop their artistic and technical skills through the creation and presentation of graphic and multi-media projects. Students are introduced to the Graphic and Visual Design field with an emphasis of design through production in a hands-on approach. Students gain competencies in traditional and computer-based layout, design, typesetting; copy preparation, composition and printing press operations. Students enhance their skills using software programs such as Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator. Students learn electronic plate making, 2-color press operations, finishing and binding, and paper cutting. Students maintain an electronic and presentation portfolio and will work on projects such as ads, logos, multi-page documents, four-color publications, posters, packaging, and photographing products to market. Students strengthen their skills in visual design by concept development, creating corporate identities, branding and packaging, as well as designing self-promos. Students will also learn to create animated GIF advertisements. In addition, students are exposed to digital photography, silk screening and sign-making technology.

Course Objectives
Using industry standards students will learn the following competencies:
♦ Integrate academics through project based learning
♦ Create a portfolio
♦ Recognize career pathway opportunities
♦ Interact safely in a shop environment
♦ Incorporate the use of industry standard technology and software
♦ Read, understand, and communicate in the language of the field
♦ Organize and research information
♦ Develop a professional appearance, exemplary work ethic and superior communication skills
♦ Demonstrate customer service & sales skills and process method of sales transaction
♦ Use resources for research & problem solving
♦ Troubleshoot, diagnose, analyze, and present data related to the fieldProgram

♦ Adobe Suite: Acrobat Professional, InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Bridge
♦ Digital Photography
♦ Silk Screening
♦ Two-Color Offset Press
♦ PrintEd Certification

Looking toward the future:
Everyone is exposed to the communications industry through newspapers, books, calendars, catalogs, and web pages. The industry continues to undergo technological changes as computers and technologies alter the manner in which work is performed. There is a demand for talented employees in the visual design field because of the rapidly expanding market for Web-based information and expansion of the video entertainment market, including television, movies, video, and made-for-Internet outlets. Visual designers with web site design and animation experience will especially be needed as demand for design projects increase for interactive media—Web sites, video games, cellular telephones, personal digital assistants (PDAs), along with new and emerging technology. Demand for visual designers also will increase as advertising firms create print and web marketing and promotional materials for a growing number of products and services. Students completing the Graphic and Visual Design program have the option of securing gainful employment, continuing formal studies at the post-secondary level, or pursuing a combination of both.

The Graphic and Visual Design program has articulation agreements with Boston University’s Center for Digital Imaging Arts, Holyoke Community College and Springfield Technical Community College.

Through the articulation agreement with Boston University’s Center for Digital Imaging Arts students who graduate from the Graphic and Visual Design program with a B+ or better have the opportunity to receive a tuition credit of $2,000.

Through the Holyoke Community College articulation agreement students have the opportunity to earn college credit in Introduction to Digital Fine Art Photography (ART 148) – 3 credits.

Through the Springfield Technical Community College articulation agreement students have the opportunity to earn college credit in: Digital Prepress (GRPH 122) – 3 credits, Typography (GRPH 125) – 3 credits, Graphic Communications (GRPH 131) – 3 credits, Introduction to Graphic Arts Computer (GRPH 145) – 3 credits, and Macintosh Operating Systems (GRPH 455) – 3 credits.

<<< Student Files >>>



Cherie Westberg
Exploratory & 1st year


Kyla Korytoski
2nd & 3rd year


Marty Dooley
2nd & 3rd year


Deb Guy
Technical Assistant
  • Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory & Gardens

  • Jordan Reynolds awarded Bronze Medal in Silk Screening

    Jordan Reynolds was recently awarded a Bronze Medal in Silk Screening at the Skills USA State Competition in Hopkinton MA.

    Jordan is a Senior at Career TEC and Southwick High School.

    Earlier this year Jordan qualified for the State competition by competing as a regional qualifier where she attained a Gold Medal

  • First time participants take First Place at BPA State Leadership Conference

    From left to right: Nadia Gomes, Benjamin Lind, Taylor Alves, Kyle Widmer, Quincy Butler, Sarah Smith, Jonathan Bray, Acacia Milligan, Gavin Houle, Michael Brissette, Cherie Westberg, Advisor. Front: Dylan Rushford.
    2nd picture: Quincy Butler and Benjamin Lind celebrate their Network and Design team’s 1st place success.
    3rd picture: Acacia Milligan receives her 4th Place Award in Graphic Design Promotion.


    WEST SPRINGFIELD – Students at the Lower Pioneer Valley Career and Technical Education Center (CTEC) showed their skills at the Business Professionals of America State Leadership Conference on March 4-6, 2017 in Framingham. First-time participants Taylor Alves, Quincy Butler, Benjamin Lind and Kyle Widmer participated in the Network Design Team contest and placed 1st for their hard work. As a result, they have been invited to attend the BPA National Leadership Conference in Orlando, Florida in May.

    A full team of students competed in various events testing their knowledge in their fields of studies. Taylor Alves (Ludlow), Quincy Butler (Agawam), Benjamin Lind (Ludlow), Kyle Widmer (Agawam), Dylan Rushford (East Longmeadow) and Nadia Gomes (East Longmeadow) represented CTEC’s Information Support Systems & Networking program. Jonathan Bray (Agawam), Gavin Houle (Easthampton), Sophie McLellan (South Hadley), and Acacia Milligan (Northampton) represented Design and Visual Communications, and Michael Brissette (Agawam) represented Graphic Communications.



    Additional honors were won in other areas. Acacia Milligan placed 4th in Graphic Design Promotion, Kyle Widmer placed 2nd and Benjamin Lind placed 3rd in PC Servicing & Troubleshooting.

    Dylan Rushford, Nadia Gomes, Michael Brissette, and Sarah Smith were recognized for their participation in the Intern program, and Dylan Rushford and Nadia Gomes received a Keystone award for going above and beyond their duties.

    CTEC is a program of the Lower Pioneer Valley Educational Collaborative, a partnership of the Agawam, East Longmeadow, Hampden-Wilbraham, Longmeadow, Ludlow, and Southwick-Tolland-Granville school districts that provides vocational education, special education, teacher training, transportation and other shared services to supplement district offerings in a cost-effective manner.

    The mission of Business Professionals of America is to contribute to the preparation of a world-class workforce through the advancement of leadership, citizenship, academic, and technological skills.

    For more information, contact:

    Donald Jarvis

    Cherie Westberg
    Graphics Instructor/BPA Advisor

    Lower Pioneer Valley Educational Collaborative
    174 Brush Hill Avenue
    West Springfield, MA 01089
    (413) 735-6300

  • Vans Custom Culture Competition

    Rob CollinsSeniors participated in the VANS Custom Culture design competition. They received 4 pair of VANS and had to design them following 4 themes: Art, Music, Local Flavor, and Action Sports. We got to visit Rob Collins ’11 (on the right) from Longmeadow, a DVC Alum who works for CONVERSE as a Marketing director at the HQ in Boston, MA where my student got to design and print custom artwork on shoes. What a great experience and how nice it was to see where a DVC alumni can end up in 5 years!Vans group Ctec

    Josh Jerin ’16, Southwick
    Carolyn Mingola’16, Southwick
    Amy Gowey ’16, Easthampton
    Gabby Martin ’16, Agawam






    van shoes

  • CTEC NEWS – September and October 2015 Graphic Communications:

    CTEC NEWS – September and October 2015 Graphic Communications:

    • Oct. 30th juniors and seniors spent the day at the Springfield Art & Science Museums on a guided tour of Art Works and Currier Ives.