Madison College Visual Communications – Media Design

Teresa Sprecher Program Director/Lead Instructor
email Teresa • 608.246.6470


I grew up in the Madison area and didn’t want to go to school in my hometown (it was the early 70s) so I went to UW-Oshkosh and majored in art. After completing two years I moved to Milwaukee and took a job working in a factory. After doing assembly line work (I work well with my hands), school didn’t look so bad and I moved back to Madison and enrolled in the commercial art program at MATC (Madison College). I worked full-time for the Department of Veterans Affairs and took classes at night. Eventually I transferred to UW-Madison and graduated with my BS degree in Art Education. After graduation I worked as a substitute for the Madison and Middleton public schools and as a preschool teacher and decided teaching at these age levels wasn’t what I wanted to do. I returned to MATC and completed my AA degree in Commercial Art.

Upon receiving my commercial art degree, my first position was as a contract employee for Ohmeda (now GE Healthcare) to create foreign language labeling for their machines. A year later, I was hired full-time as a technical illustrator. While at Ohmeda a friend of mine introduced me to the Visual Communications program at MATC. After working in B&W for six years, I longed to work in color! Once I took my first Audio Visual Techniques (slide/tape) course, I was hooked. The idea of combining images, typography, music and narration to create an impact was what I wanted to do. I found that I could use both my analytical and creative sides (Visual Communications folks are really “geeks” at heart).

Eventually I quit my job and went back to school full-time in Visual Communications program. When I finished my second AA degree I worked at (and eventually owned) 35 West Productions. 35 West was a media company that produced video, multi-image, and speaker support slides. I learned a great deal in the years that I was a business owner/production manager.

Teaching is something that I’ve always loved. I find that I learn as much from my students as I hope they learn from me. I began my career at MATC teaching part-time in both the Commercial Art (typography, studio techniques, and design and color) and Visual Communications (audio visual techniques) programs. After 14 years of teaching part-time I was hired full-time.

Over the years I’ve taught a range of courses: Intro to Computers Graphics, Multi-media Presentations, Presentation Design, Interface Design, Production, Planning & Control, Portfolio, Web Page Design, Digital Design and Drawing Fundamentals to name a few. The last several years I have also been the program director/lead instructor of the program. I enjoy working in this capacity as I feel I’m good a multi-tasking and “seeing the big picture” to help our program run smoothly and to support my colleagues and students reach their program goals.

Dragon boating is one of my passions. In 2012, I was co-chair for the Capital Lakes Dragonfest held in Madison. This event took a year to plan (a true Production, Planning and Control project) and involved many people and organizations. We had over 30 teams (700+ paddlers) from the Midwest participate in the festival. I’m proud to have also co-sponsored a team of our students (RGBeasts) for the festival. I continue to do freelance work in web and corporate graphics as well as volunteer work for a number of non-profit organizations. As a lifelong learner, I also continue to take courses to keep my skill set current and relevant to our students.

Classes taught by Teresa

  • Digital Design and Drawing Fundamentals
  • Web Page Design
  • Production, Planning & Control
  • Portfolio