Kenwood Graphics and Printing Program Prepares Students for a Future Career


The work the 2019-2020 Graphics and Printing students did on the school gym doors.

Mikayla Gillum, sophomore

The Graphics and Printing program has brought  artistic design to Kenwood High and the community. This completer program, run by Mr. Roeder, has students creating and designing a variety of things for our school community to help our students and staff stay informed of what’s happening at our school. Some things students have created for the school community include posters for school dances and fundraisers or other school related events; they also publish our annual school literary magazine. Shortly before school closed, graphic students took on the job of putting their skills and talents to work on the gym doors to the school.

One person that has been a part of this program for many years is Ms. Ray, assistant principal. She says, “I worked alongside with the teachers and the students for eight years.” She has worked with Mr. Roeder, teacher of the graphics program. This program gives students a voice in Kenwood, and it gives the staff and students pride to be a part of this school. She believes that this program “helps students who are usually quiet and shy to speak up and say something through their designs and outlook on Kenwood.”

Mr. Roeder has been running the graphics and printing program at Kenwood for sixteen years. As with many CTE programs, students in the Graphics and Printing program can graduate high school with a step up to continue in a career in graphics and printing. Roeder shares, “The Graphics and Printing department prepares students for a career in the industry. Students graduate with knowledge of the printing industry and graphic communications as a whole. They are ready to enter a 4-year college or can start directly in the industry.” Mr. Roeder believes that this program is not only helping the staff and students stay informed through the work the students do designing and creating pamphlets and flyers, but that it also helps the students prepare for a career in the field of graphics and printing.

The work students do in class is visible throughout the school as their work is for more than just a grade. The work they do contributes to the running of the school and serves the school community.

Roeder adds, “Look around the school, and people see the impact of our program. We do all the printing for the school from hall passes and school forms, to banners, wall wraps, and door wraps. Our students are getting great jobs right out of high school. They are starting off at 18 years old with a career that pays well, has medical insurance, paid time off, and unlimited opportunity. Printing is everywhere in your life.” He sees Kenwood as a helpful hand in students’ future lives. The creation of actual items used in the school shows students and others that the Graphics and Printing department is more than just a future career possibility, although that is important, but it also gives students a sense of ownership and pride with the contributions the program makes to the school.

The students are a big reason to why this program is still running today. One of the students Brian McKinzie, senior, shares, “This program is important because it helps students achieve a future career in graphics and printing.” He believes that this program can help students get a job right out of high school or in the future that is related to graphics and printing. He adds, “Graphics and Printing is a good program for me because I can create posters and photo shop and work with software.” Brian has really enjoyed being a part of the program.

Several Kenwood grads have gone on to make a career out of graphics and printing. “Four to six graphic students each year get started with careers in the industry. These students are different races, and socioeconomic backgrounds. The graduates are doing everything: file preparation, binding and finishing, shipping, cutting, and press operations. They all have one thing in common: graduating from the Kenwood Graphic Communications program. The average starting rate is $15-$18 per hour depending on the shift they work. The are getting full benefits including 401k, healthcare, and vacation. These are full-time, life long career starts. I’m so proud of them,” shared Mr. Roeder.

This hands-on career experience is just one of many things Principal Powell loves about Kenwood. “When I became the Principal here, I was ecstatic to have graphics and communications as one of our CTE programs! The program and the work our students do is tremendous and very visible throughout our entire school, and also our community. Mr. Roeder does a terrific job leading our students and providing very valuable lessons and experiences that are preparing them for a career in the industry. We have had several students graduate and go directly into the career and are excelling! We often hear from companies asking about the next set of students they can potentially recruit for employment. I am extremely proud of our program and the outstanding work that takes place in it!”

The Graphics and Printing program is one of several CTE programs at Kenwood that gives students the authentic experience of creating something for their school community while preparing for a future career.


To read more about the variety of CTE programs Kenwood provides to prepare students for various industries after high school check out the following stories below:

The Completer Pathway of CTE Offers Kenwood Students Valuable Career Explorations

Kenwood Offers New Aviation Program

JROTC at Kenwood Takes Students to New Heights

Kenwood Carpentry Program Creates Campus Improvements to Build School Pride

Kenwood Child Development Program Opening Doors for preschoolers

Feeding the Future with Chef G’s Foods and Nutrition Program

Work-Based Learning Opportunities at Kenwood