Alumni in Print—Where Are They Now?

The Print and Graphics Scholarship Foundation is publishing profiles featuring some of their more than 6000 former scholarship recipients. This series gives you an up close and personal insight into the thoughts and motivations of the former students who are a part of our industry today. As our current employees reach retirement and leave, replacing them becomes an increasingly important factor for many companies. Here is one story…

A Profile

Adair Hall graduated from Clemson University in May 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Communications.

How did you first get interested in the graphic arts, or decide to focus on graphic communications in school?

I have always loved creating different types of art and spent a lot of my childhood “doodling” and crafting. I started designing t-­‐shirts for various clubs in high school. When I was unsure of what type of major I wanted to apply for in college, my mom shared a Clemson Graphic Communications brochure with me. I toured the department at Clemson during my Junior year of high school and I immediately knew that was where I wanted to attend college.

Did you take any courses in high school that were related to graphic communications, or that prepared you for your planned career?

The only classes I took in high school that were graphic related in any way was art. I wish that my school would have offered design classes or printing classes prior to college for me.

How do you think going through your education process prepared you for the workforce?

Going through Graphics Communications really prepared me for the work force. We learn at least the basics of every type of segment in the industry—design, printing, paper, web, photography, you name it. We also were required to participate in two full-time internships, which really allowed me to understand business etiquette, and how to communicate in a professional setting.

In the Workforce Today

What company are you working for now and what types of products and services do they provide to their customers?

I work for Bennett Graphics located right outside of Atlanta in Tucker, Georgia. We are a commercial printer providing our customers digital, offset, and wide format printing processes.

What job did you first have with the company when you started, what position do you have now, and/or what else have you done since joining the company?

I was hired as an Account Executive, or as some would call it a Sales Representative, and still currently work in that position. I help plan events we host at our facility as well as serve on our Recruitment team.

What do you think employers are looking for in today’s workforce and the current industry environment?

I think they are looking for a dedicated, hard worker. Someone who is passionate about the industry. Background knowledge in printing is very valuable. There are so many variables that go into a printing job, so having someone that has experience and understands the process is a huge benefit.

Is there anything that you have found to be particularly different from what you initially expected, now that you’ve progressed through your work career for a period of time?

Working for a commercial printer, I am reminded every single day how much print there is out there. I don’t think it is something that many people realize on an everyday basis. I didn’t even take notice of all the print around me while I was studying it in school. Now that I am working, I tend to be more aware of all of the printing materials. Everywhere you go, there’s tons of print; the grocery store, the hardware store, the bank. There are so many possibilities in printing, and I am surprised everyday with the unique ways it can be used.

Have you changed your plans or ideas about what area or type of job you might like to have since you first considered the graphic communications field and began studying for a career in it?

I love sales. I enjoy the fact that I get to communicate with customers every day, solve their printing problems or fulfill their print needs, and sometimes even have a chance to be a part of the creative brainstorming processes with them. Every project is different which makes every day different. It’s a lot of fun!

What do you see yourself doing a few years from now?

A few years from now I hope to be a very successful print sales representative… ideally a top sales representative at Bennett, but I work with some of the best, so that will take time.

Was being a recipient of a PGSF scholarship important, or did it have an impact on your future or ability to succeed in the industry?

Yes, very much so. Receiving the PGSF scholarship was extremely important. Without the scholarship, and the education I received at Clemson, I would not have the valuable print knowledge that helped me get my job and that I use daily when working with my clients.

Anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you PGSF for investing in me and my future!