Design Students Use Skills to Support Social and Economic Inclusion Consortium

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A recently-established Worcestershire Consortium of Voluntary and Community Sector Organisations has turned to the creative skills of University of Worcester students to help research, develop and then design ideas for their communication tools.

The Consortium – which includes representation from the University, Worcestershire’s Housing Associations and other local Voluntary and Community Sector organisations – hopes to secure European Social Funding to provide support to local, working-age people who are ‘trapped’ in a cycle of low paid, temporary jobs or unemployment and are excluded from economic opportunities in the County.

Graphic Design and Multimedia students from the University were brought in to help establish communication tools on the recommendation of Katy Boom, the University’s Director of Environmental Sustainability, who is a member of the Consortium.

The students regularly take part in ‘live’ brief projects to design and develop communication tools for companies and organisations, and Andy Stevenson, Senior Lecturer in Design, was delighted with the work produced.

“This 24-hour live brief was a tough challenge for our students, but represented a very realistic task,” he explains.

“The students rose to the challenge though, and created some excellent solutions for the Consortium, which both tutors and the clients were really impressed with.

“This genre of project plays on the accrued practical and research skills of our final year students and aims to utilise these to both link up with and practically assist local community organisations - an idea we label 'design for social good’."

Clare Huyton, from Fortis Living and Chair of the emerging Consortium, said of the finished work: “The student ideas were really refreshing and we were impressed with both their insight into the aim of the Consortium, use of social media and the visions created in their logos – it has been a great collaboration that has provided us with ideas for a first class logo and a way forward with our communications.”

The above picture shows students responsible for the designs of the winning logos are pictured being presented with their prizes, which were donated by Vestia Community Trust on behalf of the Consortium.