MAKING CREATIVITY PAY
Graduating from a degree “work-ready” into a booming glo-bal
industry is a big draw for students. Jon Wardle is director
of the UK’s National Film and Television school, which ranks
amongst the top film, television and new media schools in
the world. He tells The PIE that more than ever before, indu-stry
employers want to meet his students.
“In the UK, for the very first time probably, film and televi-sion
schools, whether that is film schools, or courses within
universities, can confidently stand at open days and say, ‘you
know what guys, there is a huge amount of work in this area’.”
Wardle explains that the film and television industry for 20
years has been quite boutique, with maybe 80 films made in
the UK annually. But now big online companies like Netflix
and Apple are moving in and offering jobs. Wardle cites the
fact that two years ago Netflix made around 50 hours of
TV in the UK, last year it made 75, and this coming year it
will make 110 hours.
“There is just more work than there has ever been and
I think that has changed the dynamic around talent in the
UK,” he relates.
“Whereas we used to be going to the big companies and
saying it would be great if you could get involved with what
we are doing, I’m now being approached by big companies
who want my students… They all want to be here.”
Programs provide innovative schemes that help students
get started in their chosen field. For example, Point Blank, a
UK-based music production school with franchises across
the world, has started its only record label so its students
can release their music.
ISSUE #25 | THE PIE REVIEW | 13
Programs also prepare students for entry into the work-place
by teaching them to be business savvy. Creative arts
graduates are ready to make money as well as art.
“We’ve been developing innovative new programs desig-ned
to connect the creative arts with 21st century careers,”
states director of academic program marketing at the New
School in the US, Laura Montgomery.
“In other words, education that integrates rigorous
training in a student’s chosen craft as well as professional
skills that prepare them for careers in the new economy,
To this end, The New School offers a Master’s in Arts Ma-nagement
& Entrepreneurship which is designed to prepare
active performing artists for careers in arts management,
cultural policy, arts philanthropy, and entrepreneurship.
There are clear
studying design and
job outcomes Film production is one of the many courses at NFTS, which also offers
games design and location sound recording
The course has global appeal, and in fact, Montgomery
acknowledges, “The New School is actually the no.1 most
international university in the USA, in terms of percentage
of international students – about 33 per cent. And more
than half of our 10,000 students are in creative fields.”
The New School, which incorporates various colleges and
schools such as Parsons School of Design, College of Per-forming
Arts and Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, can
point to design programs as a particular lure, with more than
half of The New School’s student body enrolled at Parsons
School of Design.
In Australia, innovative design education is also a global
beacon, especially for Chinese students, says Elisabeth Find-lay,
Griffith University’s arts, education and law international
director associate professor.
“This is partly because there are clear connections bet-ween
studying design and job outcomes, such as becoming
a graphic designer, interior designer or working in product
manufacturing,” she relates.
“In recent years, however, there has also been a growing
interest in other areas such as visual arts, film and music as
societies such as China and India place more emphasis on
the transformative potential of the creative economy.”
She continues: “The growth is most notable in postgradu-ate
studies with students from diverse backgrounds seeking
a creative arts education.”