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Adobe award-winner credits VCC's focus on soft skills

Posted on July 5, 2019

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Originally published in Star Metro Vancouver

The iconic Vancouver Lookout and Science World, a hand holding a marker and a camera are some of the elements Claire Kang — a Vancouver Community College (VCC) graphic design diploma program student — combined to create her winning submission to the Adobe Design Achievement Awards. Kang’s concept illustration, which depicts the stories of the program and its students, was picked as top talent from thousands of global entries to the media competition for students and emerging creators. 

“I thought the Adobe awards would help to promote my career,” says Kang, who previously completed VCC’s graphic design certificate, and thanks to a previous degree from her native Korea, now only has to complete Year 2 of the two-year program to earn the credential. “I appreciate the VCC instructors helping me to choose the perfect image to submit.” 

Lorena Espinoza is VCC’s department leader of digital media design. She says the type of initiative Kang showed by entering the contest is part of the graphic design program’s learning outcomes, such as self-promotion, self-awareness, and playing up personal strengths, in addition to covering conceptual thinking, workforce, studio practices, client interaction, client-centred projects, curriculum, and flexible pathways. 

“The program was revamped two years ago and one of the changes was a deeper focus on developing not only technical graphic design skills but also soft skills,” says Espinoza. “I thought it was really proactive of Claire, which is what we teach in class.” 

As an Adobe award winner, Kang’s work will get a website feature, she’ll earn a coveted “Top Talent” badge for her LinkedIn profile and other social profiles as well as a certificate, and receive a one-year subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud all-apps. Kang says she hopes the platform will help her to stand out as she prepares to graduate and enter the graphic design field with an aim of becoming an art director.  

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