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sixth form

Sarah - Bournemouth University, Product Design



Date attended Ashmole:  2009 - 2016

A Levels:  Graphic Design, Theatre Studies, Philosophy and Ethics

University:   Bournemouth University

Course:  Product Design







What are you doing now?

Following on from my A levels at Ashmole, I went on to complete a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design at Hertford Regional College.  On the Foundation, I fused my interest in Politics, Philosophy and Social Policy, with Product Design - awarded a distinction for a mixed media 3D installation focused on the London Housing Crisis.

After completing the Art Foundation, I took some time to travel in Europe and Asia.  The opportunity to travel independently enhanced my problem solving and organisational skills and has acted to develop my world view.

In September 2017, I began a degree course in Product Design at Bournemouth University. The course is very practical; I have designed, researched and created a marketable Disposable Razor and CPR Machine.  I have also been able to refer back to my philosophy work at Ashmole, considering theoretical arguments around function and form and consumption culture.

What did/do you get involved with at university?

I am involved in the Swimming Society and would also like to get involved in the Student Labour Party, whilst at University.

I also plan to apply my design skills to Student Theatre Productions, working in collaboration with the University of Art, Bournemouth.

What did you find most valuable about your experiences at Ashmole Academy? What skills did it help you to develop?

As a person with Dyslexia, who throughout my academic career found reading and writing difficult, I would like to attribute the specialist support of the SEN team at Ashmole to helping me achieve in my A levels and have the confidence to apply to University.  I received additional proof reading and mentoring which inspired me to access further education.

Through being involved in the Feminist Society and whole school productions at Ashmole, I learnt to effectively manage my time and work effectively in collaboration with a variety of different people.  My involvement on the Senior Team taught me important event management and organisational skills and refined my public speaking skills, skills that I have found very useful at university.

What top tips would you give to other students wishing to follow a similar career to yours?

My top tip for pursuing a career in a creative industry is to visit and see as much art and design as possible and get involved with events at Ashmole where you can practically apply your skills: set and costume design for the whole school production and visiting the Art and Technology Showcase.  Utilise the free galleries and pop up exhibitions on the doorstep of Ashmole in London, and remain up to date with current affairs that may inform your work.

I would also advise people to seek additional academic support - plenty of which is offered at Ashmole.  At University, I attend additional Maths classes as this is an area I find hard.  Seize support when it is given to you and use this to build your confidence.

How did Ashmole help you reach your goals?

The Graphic Design teachers helped me set academic goals, providing me with both insight into industry and academic pathways. They facilitated additional time in the workshop and gave constructive advice on to how to develop and improve my coursework and exam technique. This support and encouragement inspired me to pursue a career in creative industry and apply to read Product Design at University.

Anything else you would like to tell us about yourself.

Alongside my A levels and further studies, I have worked as a Lifeguard and in a Wedding Retail Shop.  I had the responsibility for dressing the windows and mannequins and marketing stock - building on my skills from A level.

Please write a quote that sums up your experience at Ashmole.

“It’s not the uniform, pigeons or chip queue that have stayed with me from Ashmole, but the warm, supportive and aspiring atmosphere which continues to enable me to succeed”