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Creative Futures at Glyndŵr University

The Careers Centre at Glyndŵr University recently carried out a survey to find out what academic staff and students in the School of Art and Design wanted from an employability event. The results highlighted the need to invite experts and leaders in the industry into the university. Students and staff also wanted to hear from alumni about their current work and how they got started.

Creative Futures is the result. It is a week-long employability event involving students and graduates from the school. The aim of Creative Futures is to increase students' understanding and knowledge of possible future career opportunities within the various creative industries. It provides them with an opportunity to network with industry professionals and art and design alumni to help them to start to create and manage their own career path. The main objectives of the event are to provide students with the opportunity to develop their professional skills, help build their confidence and raise their aspirations.

Creative Futures is run over four days:

• Day 1: How to sell yourself, CVs, job search, etc (8 sessions)
• Day 2: Becoming self-employed, entrepreneurial skills, etc (8 sessions)
• Day 3: Alumni day (8 sessions)
• Day 4: Meet the expert

This event is now part of the curriculum and seen as a valuable student conference.

All of the above meet the overall strategic aim of improving the employability of students at Glyndŵr University.

Meet the expert

The most popular day of the event is Meet the expert. Academic staff recommend industry experts relevant to their subject areas, which have included leaders in the fields of animation, illustration, graphic design, photography and fine art. The event offers students an opportunity to listen to and interact with a wide range of speakers, talking about areas that they may never have considered.

Alumni who are successfully working in a specialism are invited back to tell their story and how they got to where they are, and to lead workshops, give advice, examine portfolios and talk about their industry- the trends, experience needed and how to apply.

All activity is recorded into PDP (personal development planning) as part of careers and employability programmes. Students are assessed on their self-reflection of the learning experience and are encouraged to record their experiences via a blog.

Long-term benefits

The long-term benefits from this event are:

• the experience students will gain from focusing on their strengths;
• advice from industry experts;
• where to start with next step planning;
• the ability to identify gaps in  their experience;
• where to gain work experience, which will lead to development of their
   confidence in their application into their own area of expertise.

The project has been running for four years. It has successfully developed each year based on the findings of students' strengths and the views for further development from students and academic staff. The Careers Centre manages other similar employability projects in subject areas such as social sciences, education, engineering, broadcasting, business and health.

For more information, contact: Karen Lennox, Head of Careers, Glyndŵr University.

Tags: University art guildHE Glyndwr University wales creative creative industries design

Created on: 03 September 2012

Last updated: 24 September 2012

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