Emerging Tech field trip shows students new career paths


Ethan Ferguson, Staff Reporter

Emerging Technology is a class that enables students to enhance their skills in 3D modeling and screen printing with an open curriculum. While the class is mostly a hands-on experience, it’s tough for some students in the class to think about future applications of these technologies. 

A recent field trip to Gear for Sports provided students in the class with an experience at a large apparel company that is partnered with brands like Under Armour and Champion. Emerging technology teacher Tim Mispagel, who has a prior history with the company as a graphic designer, was very excited when he was given the opportunity to take his students on the trip. 

“I was pleasantly surprised when I reached out to the company, my managers that I worked for when I was there were still there but just higher up,” Mispagel said. 

For Mispagel, the trip was all about the opportunities that could arise from seeing how the company runs and becoming familiar with the process. Gear for Sports has over 600 employees on staff, ranging from graphic design to fashion merchandising to typical IT specialists. This range of occupations was an emphasis on the class trip to give students an opportunity to think about future career paths. 

“You could be studying a career path that looks glamorous on the outside looking in, but until you get into a company and get to see what it’s actually like, only then will you be informed on the reality of the situation,” Mispagel said. 

The field trip informed Mispagel’s students about many different potential careers but also summer internship opportunities that the students could take advantage of in the near future. 

The Emerging Technology students of DHS had many personal favorite parts of the trip. Senior Taylor Burger enjoyed the fashion department the most because of the work they do in trendspotting. 

“It’s pretty interesting that they [fashion designers] had to go back into different parts of fashion and decide what will be the next big thing [in the next year or two.]” 

With many different fields that the students were able to see, it was easy for students to think about themselves and the potential careers that they would like to have. Senior Brody Canaan enjoyed talking with the graphic designers and seeing the process they use when working on their art. 

“The one([career] that I would see myself most in is probably graphic design because we talked to an actual graphic designer and she was working on a logo with a college and it was really cool to see that they work directly with big universities,” Canaan said. 

Because Gear for Sports is only 20 minutes away from De Soto, it allowed the students like Canaan to see a local company working with larger scale corporations and universities. 

“It was nice to see that there’s opportunities here and jobs that you can work here, and they talked about how they would see a shirt in a store and be able to say ‘Hey, I think I worked on that. That was very cool to me.” Canaan said. 

Whether the students are interested in the world of graphic design or not, all agreed it was an important experience to see how the company operates, as well as how all employees are a vital part of the overall operation.