EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Canutillo High School has turned one of their classrooms into a fully operating business, ran by its students.
The DigiPrint Shop is introducing local high school students to the foundations of graphic design and business. They are being taught how to create designs on programs like Photoshop and how to transfer them onto products like t-shirts, hoodies, coffee mugs, stickers, phone cases, canvas bags, and tiles.
Career and Technical Education (CTE) Director, Tracy Andrews commends students in their efforts to use this hands-on experience as a tool for their future endeavors.
“It’s amazing when you’re a director and worked in the business world, and then got to see students do the same thing, experience that at this level,” says Andrew.
Canutillo High School Principal, Teresa Clapsaddle, is just now seeing the student-made products come to life but is extremely excited for this learning experience for them that goes far beyond high school.
“I think it’s very exciting that we’re going to be able to grow the program and open it up to sales and really help the kids not just understand the making of the product, but how then do we merchandise that and get that out and make money,” says Clapsaddle.
Administrators say CTE programs like the DigiPrint Shop are valuable to their students because it enables them after high school graduation, with jobs or a better perspective on the field of business.
“Who knows maybe one of them will go on to run their own business one day,” says Clapsaddle.
The response from students has also been positive — Students say this class is one of their more lively ones throughout the day, keeping them busy and thinking creatively.
Students like David Fant, a Canutillo senior, is looking forward to being able to work with the community on their upcoming projects.
“I want to see more people come to the print shop, so that way we have more customers,” says Fant. And I like the experience that it gives us for the real world,” he said.
Valerie Guerrero, also a Canutillo senior, is looking to attend UTEP where she has plans to study business, applying what she is learning.
“It’s a more hands-on activity — it gives us some real-world experiences that will help us out there in the real world [when] trying to get some jobs and some experience,” says Guerrero.
While Guerrero doesn’t know what business she wants to start, the DigiPrint shop is helping her navigate that decision.
School administrators are certain CTE programs like this one will better enable students after high school graduation, establishing a potential career path early on.
Currently, there are about 100 students, freshmen to seniors, actively enrolled in the program.
The student’s largest customer has been the school and its athletics teams, but new clients are welcomed following the shop’s official unveiling.
The DigiPrint Shop grand opening will be on Monday, October 7 at 1 p.m. at Canutillo High School, 6675 S. Desert Blvd.