Front Range Community College Blog

From FRCC Graphic Design to LA

Katherine Greczyn photo

Aim high.

That’s what Deb Craven, multimedia technology faculty and department chair, tells her students to do as they prepare for the job market.

Kate Greczyn aimed high, and she is off to Los Angeles to work for a major advertising agency specializing in campaigns for the entertainment industry. The Refinery claims about 140 of the biggest names in entertainment, from film to television to gaming to streaming services.

Initial contact to job offer.

“Before spring break I was researching design agencies in Los Angeles,” Kate says. “I found a few and I emailed them to ask for a tour. The Refinery responded that they had a position open. They asked me to send a portfolio and resume. A few days later, they were back in touch.”

Her portfolio was her website, which she had created as an assignment in her Business for Creatives class, an interesting class in the study of business practices unique to commercial art. One takeaway: A talented designer without professionalism and other soft skills doesn’t get the job. A talented designer with those skills does.

The agency flew Kate to Los Angeles.

“The interview went well,” she says. “It was Thursday of spring break. On Monday, I was offered the position, which they would hold open until I graduated.”

Kate graduated this semester with an Associate of Applied Science in graphic design.

“I was overwhelmed by the offer,” Kate says. “I didn’t really take it in,”

Of course, she accepted. She begins in mid-May as a print production coordinator. She explains she will be involved in the last step in production. It involves formatting, creating pdfs, and other duties, all for getting the work to the client on time.

A well-traveled route from GED to college degree.

Kate’s family traveled as missionaries as she was growing up, but she considered Colorado home. After earning a GED, she lived in Hawaii, northern California, Colorado, and Los Angeles, where her sister is an actress.

After her father’s job ended in Hawaii, Kate stayed behind to work to save enough to move back on her own.

Returning to Colorado, she worked in the service industry.

“I realized all I could do without an education was service industry work,” she says. “I wanted more.”

So she came to FRCC. “It was the best decision I ever made,” she says.

With a penchant for music and a love for design, Kate tried both but soon chose the design path. Music remains a hobby.

Real-world experience in digital media.

In addition to her class work, Kate was a graphic designer and then project manager at the Boulder County Campus Design Agency. The agency, which works as a professional agency, designs and produces marketing material for campus programs and events. She also created educational video games during a three-week paid technology intensive summer workshop with Google and the University of Colorado-Boulder.

From FRCC to Los Angeles.

Now, Kate is off to Los Angeles.

“It’s a bit intimidating,” she says, “but I’m ready for the challenge.”

Kate aimed high, and she has landed well.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John Feeley is director of public relations at Front Range Community College.