The UK’s largest graduate design showcase is introducing digital initiatives in lieu of a physical showcase this year.
A graduate showcase is often the pinnacle of students in design education, but for the class of 2020, things will play out a little differently, thanks to the coronavirus outbreak.
While lockdown restrictions are beginning to ease, New Designers has decided to cancel its physical event for the UK’s graduate design talent, instead focussing on digital platforms to promote students’ work, find new opportunities in the interest and advance their design careers.
“Given the current climate of economic uncertainty, many students are apprehensive about their graduation into the world of work, particularly within the art and design industries. As many universities have been forced to cancel or postpone their own degree shows, events that are crucial for career development, the graduates of 2020 have limited opportunities to connect with peers and showcase their work. With ND Awards 2020 and other online initiatives, New Designers is aiming to provide students with an alternative platform to exhibit their skills,” says Sally Bent, event director.
Printed ceramic tiles; ‘Print’, both by Rachel Elinor, BA (Hons) Fashion and Textiles at The Glasgow School of Art
Social media has its role to play in 2020’s platform for new design talent. From the start of June, The New Designers Instagram account becomes home to ND Selects, a campaign to showcase students’ final projects.
On July 1st, New Designers will also launched its ND Awards 2020 briefs, a graduate awards scheme that is open to all design disciplines, from fashion to furniture to industrial design.
Students will then have 6 weeks to create a response to their chosen briefs, which will then be reviewed by a panel of expert judges. The prizes on offer differ depending on the category, but all with a goal of boosting their profile and creating new opportunities in their chosen fields.
Edible, dissolvable noodle pack by Holly Grounds, BA (Hons) Product Design at Ravensbourne University
Between the 1st and 11th July, it will also be launching ND Connects and ND Educates, a series of comprehensive programmes of workshops and talks in collaboration with industry partners including Creative Conscience, Ellen MacArthur Foundation, The Goldsmith’s Centre and Knowledge Transfer Network. These remote workshops will focus on supporting students in the next chapter of their professional development, from portfolio feedback to live chats with experts.