Students need to find jobs outside design

So far this year 38 000 students have applied for art and design degree and national diploma courses, an increase of 13 000 on 1996 (DW 6 June).

According to the Design Council, it is vital to manage student expectations. Not nearly 38 000 graduates in the year 2000 will get jobs as designers, yet many colleges are still advertising their design courses as essentially vocational. A design education offers skills and experiences which are directly transferable to other fields, from management to marketing, from innovation to production.

I was depressed by the implications behind Penny Hudd’s (Kingston University) statement that “thoughtful, talented young people who recognise that design is an increasingly competitive and tough world, are still accepting the challenge and choosing art and design for their future careers” (Letters, DW 6 June). If this is the career expectation which is still being created, who will manage the inevitable disappointment of the majority of graduates?

Moira Fraser Steele

Education and training director

Design Council

London SW1

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