Ezekiel Sokan of the University of the Arts (UAL), London delivered an informative presentation and spoke to Art and Design level 3 students on Friday, 18th November. This had been arranged by Marshal Miller, Lecturer in Art and Design, to give the students a head start into what they need to do to achieve a place at a high standing university or, for those who did not wish to progress to university, secure an apprenticeship or employment – personal statements are needed for all pathways in some form.
UAL is not only the awarding body for Stanmore College’s Art and Design qualifications, it is also the second top university in the world for Art and Design second only to the World College of Arts but the World College of Arts offer post graduate qualifications only.
Ezekiel showed video footage, in which his colleagues who review personal statements from students seeking university places outlined exactly what they look for in university applicants personal statements. These included a visual diary that represents an individual; who they are, a selection of concepts that tells a story, aspects of creativity and the student’s personal journey that’s brought them to their final work in the portfolio. Ezekiel said that UAL want to see a portfolio that outlines the development of an idea into a final piece and to think about transferable skills and contextualise the work so it can be understood by the person reviewing it.
The attentive students were advised not to overuse the thesaurus; there can be a misconception that use of impressive words in personal statements improve it, however they do not always support the context or make sense so it is better for it to be easily understood as to why an individual wishes to study art and design and where they see it leading to in the future than unclear. While personal statements need to be professional, it is important to remember that each one should be unique to an individual and their reasons and goals and not a version of someone else’s statement.
The level 3 students found the talk and video footage shown extremely useful and felt it put them in good stead for applying to university and whatever the future may hold.
We are grateful to UAL and all external associates for coming in to support our Stanmore College students to achieve, and regularly exceed, their goals. If you, or a young person you know, are considering studying Art and Design, check out our courses at https://stanmore.ac.uk/Courses/art-and-design or apply online.