Students need to know design industry realities

In recent issues of Design Week, readers have expressed their concern over the ability of education providers to turn out the calibre of graduates that the industry needs to compete.

In recent issues of Design Week, readers have expressed their concern over the ability of education providers to turn out the calibre of graduates that the industry needs to compete.

The design industry labour market supports a workforce of 70 000 people, yet at any time in our higher education system there are 60 000 people studying art and design. It is unsurprising that art and design students have the highest unemployment rates six months after graduation than any other degree-level discipline.

There is an urgent need for students to access better careers advice and develop more realistic expectations of the industries they seek to join.

That is one of the problems that Creative & Culture Skills is tackling with design employers, education providers and institutions such as The Design Council. It is our objective to develop high quality skills and market intelligence to ensure that designers have more real-time, consumer-oriented information about what is really required of jobs in our industry.

Tom Bewick, Chief executive, Creative & Cultural Skills, London SE1

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