COLUMN: ‘Lets encourage youngsters to be creative’

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This is one of my favourite times of year to work in college.

It is a time when we celebrate the academic and personal achievements of our students from across the college.

Exam season is over and we are reflecting on how far students have progressed, what they can do next and what the longer term future holds for them.

In the last few weeks we’ve seen awards ceremonies, end of year performances, and our annual arts festival featuring the work of fashion, art, design and media students. All of these events give students and apprentices the chance to shine and share their achievements with friends, family and employers from across the sectors they want to work in.

According to the Creative Industries Federation, the sector is generating jobs at three times the rate of employment in general.

It’s encouraging to know that all those budding artists and designers who have taken part in our arts festival, are building skills which are in high demand.

For the first time this year we have had the chance to nurture artistic talent from an even younger age. Schools pupils rose to the challenge in our Young Artist of the Year competition.

It’s only by encouraging creativity at a young age and giving people the confidence in their abilities can we expect to develop the range of skills we need for our economy.

Exam results are important, but that is just one way to measure capability. Personal achievements, a positive attitude and a commitment to developing work experience in the field that students are interested in is what makes them stand out.

From what I have seen and heard, we have some real stars in our midst who are all set to make a difference in their chosen fields.

Watch this space!