NORTH BAY -- Third year graduating graphic design students at Canadore College in North Bay are highlighting their work throughout their time in school in an online portfolio showcase.

While the school year has been tough for many post-secondary students, it has actually helped the graphic design program adapt in the way they make their work. Professors believe this will be critical in the job hunt.

Gillian Hébert, Katia Labranche, and Jaspher Lott are ready to enter the workforce. They are set to graduate with their peers from the program this spring.

"I went in graphic design because I knew I wanted a future in the arts. I learned so much more than just art," said Lott.

Every school year under normal circumstances, the students of the Graphic Design program at Canadore College would hold a design showcase to be displayed on campus.

The graduating students choose their finest work from their first day of the first year until graduation and create a portfolio. It's the course’s main project but the last two showcases have been forced to go virtual.

"The third year cohort has been so amazing. They have been resilient and showed maturity and we're all so proud of them," said Canadore College Graphic Design Coordinator Shirley Mondoux.

Hébert says she is passionate about illustrations.

"I'm an illustrator for children's book authors and authors looking to bring their stories to life in a graphic novel sense," she said.

As part of this virtual showcase, the students compile a creative portfolio of their artwork and the skills they've picked up through their time in school and show them off for potential clients and employers.

"It expands their reach of their portfolios and what they're able to show to the world," said Professor Nicole Graham.

The pandemic has been somewhat of a blessing in disguise for the program as more and more people switch over to a digital way of working.

The program's students say there is more need for graphic designers to help businesses find new ways to market themselves.

"Some of the older businesses haven't quite adapted to bring all of their items into an online landscape," said Lamarche.

Mondoux hopes the program can hold a physical showcase next year on campus as well as continue to hold the virtual component.

The full showcase can be found here.