What is Spyder Lab

Spyder Lab is a work-based program that prepares a new generation of skilled entrepreneurs and graphic media leaders by connecting students to hands-on career exploration opportunities in business, manufacturing, and design.

What do you learn

Understanding of Print Production Processes:

You’ll gain insight into the various stages of print production, including pre-press, printing, and finishing. This includes learning about different printing techniques, paper types, color management, and how to prepare files for print to ensure high-quality results.

Design for Print Specifications:

You’ll learn how to design specifically for print media, including how to set up documents with the correct dimensions, bleed, margins, and resolution. This also involves understanding color modes (CMYK vs. RGB), typography considerations, and how to ensure that your design translates well from screen to physical print.

Client Communication and Project Management:

You’ll develop skills in working with clients to understand their needs and preferences, managing design revisions, and ensuring that projects are completed on time and within budget. This includes learning how to create detailed design briefs, provide accurate cost estimates, and coordinate with various stakeholders involved in the production process.

What does Spyder Lab Offer

Industry Level Printing Equipment Training & Certifications

Graphics Design

SOP, Cost Analysis & Sales

QuickBooks Online

Soft Skills Certifications

Digital Portfolios

Equipment Certifications

When a student has become good enough at using a machine to use it unsupervised, they can be awarded a certification for that machine. There’s Essential and Advanced certifications for each machine.  Spyder Certifications are recognized by industry partners like Roland, Epilog, and Ricoh.

What’s the point of a certification?

Earning certifications is one of the primary goals for Spyder Lab students. Once you get a certification, you can put it on your resume or portfolio to show employers that you have the technical skills to operate a machine. 


Certification ensures that students are trained to use equipment safely and correctly, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries in both classroom and workshop settings.

Career Preparation

It provides practical skills and hands-on experience that can enhance students’ job readiness or college applications, making them more attractive to employers or more prepared for advanced studies in technical fields.

Skill Development

Certification helps students gain technical competencies and confidence in using specific equipment, which can be beneficial for future academic or career pursuits.

These certifications are similar to certifications for Mechanics (ASE) or Chefs (Harper College).

Cooperate Positions

Students will be assigned roles for each order to get necessary experience in different management positions. These roles will help build soft skills such as communication, leadership, teamwork, time management, critical thinking, and creative thinking.

General Manager: Updates the instructor on the progress of orders, holds team meetings to review team progress, and holds team members accountable for their work.

Sales Rep: Communicates with the customer to request artwork and get proof approvals signed. They also deliver orders and ensure packing slips get signed.

Office Manager: Uses QuickBooks to verify pricing, generate invoices and work orders, and receive packing slips and payment from customers. 

Production Manager: Decides who will help with production, cooperates with other Production Managers to ensure the needed machines are available, completes orders.

Creative Director: Creates artwork for the project and documents the project.

What’s the point of a certification?

Soft Skills Certifications

Soft skill certifications are valuable for demonstrating proficiency, supporting career advancement, and facilitating personal development.


  • Share constructive criticism,
  • Actively listen to others
  • Communicate expectations verbally, visually, or in writing


  • Lead a team through a project
  • Keep team organized
  • Motivate team
  • Take initiative when difficulties arise


  • Coordinate with team to execute a high-quality project
  • Demonstrate problem solving
  • Negotiate, listen, and provide input throughout the project.

Time Management

  • Organize tasks according to urgency and top priority
  • Reserve material and machine time to avoid lead time delays
  • Arrive on time and be prepared for all meetings, classes and events

Critical Thinking

  • Formulate workable solutions with the team to resolve any obstacles while tackling a task
  • Improve process or product through self-directed, self-monitored, and collaborative thinking
  • Research and brainstorm to come up with original ideas.
  • Allow for fluent or continuous flow of ideas from all team members
  • Be flexible in order to meet what the client wants
  • Confirm that client’s expectations are met or exceeded.

What’s the point of a certification?

Enhanced Employability


Professional Development


Personal Growth


Digital Portfolios

Let’s look at what a digital portfolio looks like!


A digital portfolio is like a detailed resume. They show all the work you’ve done and highlight your achievements for employers to see. It lets employers understand what kind of work they can expect out of their potential employees and what experience they have.

Your digital portfolio doesn’t have to be perfect, but it should be updated throughout the year with the projects you work on and the skills you develop. At the end of each project, work with a Spyder Lab mentor to update your portfolio for that project.


Same as Soft Skills Certification Prerequisite

Complete at least one semester / quarter of Spyder Lab Workshop.

Participate at least three projects and three different corporate positions.

Achieve At least two equipment certifications. (For certain schools, change this prerequisite to has done projects by using two major equipment )

Spyder Lab Job Opportunity 


Decent Spyder Lab Portfolio

Achieve At least Four equipment certifications.

At last Entry level Photoshop & Illustrator Skills

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