June is always an exciting time of year for anyone working in design, as this month marks student degree shows in UK art and design universities. If you studied these subjects, cast your mind back to the effort that went into your final push, the excitement you felt at bringing all your hard work together in one last display. There is no feeling quite like that sense of adrenaline and achievement you go through as part of your final degree assessments.
And there is nothing quite like the UK's student degree shows. Nowhere else in the world will you find such a concentration of talent and innovative thinking as you will in those shows taking place at the leading art and design universities across the country. If you work in the creative sector, you simply have to take the opportunity to visit. The next generation of designers, thinkers and visionaries are to be found at these shows.
See their work now - these are the individuals you will be reading about in the pages of leading art and design publications.
At the Royal College of Art we are aware that these degree shows aren't simply part of our students' final assessments. These shows are a shop window for global design talent and we actively encourage potential employers to meet our students with a view to offering them employment.
Of course these employers come to see if they can talent spot and gain a competitive advantage by recruiting the best and brightest. But they also come to experience that sense of wonder you get when you see a truly exceptional design - something that straight away connects with you on an emotional level through its inventiveness or beauty.
Every year I walk around wondering when I will encounter the next Barber Osgerby, the next Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, or David Adjaye. I recall talking to an Innovation Design Engineering student showcasing a design called Plumis, and meeting him again just yesterday, to learn that his business is turning over £1m - all based on the back of an ingenious design he presented at his final show in 2008. Or the work of textile designer Emma Shipley, who graduated in 2011 and this year was commissioned by the Star Wars franchise to create a range of luxury scarves and ties.
I would urge all of you to attend as many of these shows as you can - not just ours, of course, but those in Norwich, Leeds, Glasgow - throughout the UK. This is the UK design and art world in bloom!
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