Students from the BA/FdA Design for Graphic Communication course have been involved with a project for the Sorrell Foundation’s Young Design Programme set up by Ian Thompson for a new school, Heartlands High.
Heartlands High School is a secondary school in Wood Green, North London, and is a new build part of the Building Schools for the Future scheme. The student’s projects are part of the program which aims to improve quality of life in schools and colleges through good design. The collaboration between LCC and Heartlands High School allowed 50 year 7 students to be put in contact with design students from the Design for Graphic Communication course.
Nine students from across the course were involved in the project. Representing the third year BA course were Obie Campbell, Anna Magombe and Cao Minh Trang, for the second year FdA course were students Lin Liang and Gabriella Smoczynski and for the first year FdA course were Rene Fourie, Hoi Lam Yuen and Kelvin Ola-Ayoade.
Year 7 students from Heartlands High School were the clients within the project and developed a brief for the design students to answer. The overall design brief was to create a brand for the schools house system. The students therefore developed a design proposal in order to answer their brief.
The student’s work on the brief demonstrated their ability to work independently in a task driven situation. They carried out research, created presentations and developed a number of concepts which they then refined in order to create a mock up for their final applications. With some international students involved in the project by communicating through Facebook and a dropbox, set up by the students, this meant that the project was able to continue over the Easter break when many students headed home. Regular meetings were put in place in order to discuss ideas and develop the project further. With many tasks to complete the students displayed a good ability to distribute the work load in order to complete tasks quickly and efficiently.
The project was a great opportunity for the design students, as it allowed them to work to a real live brief which helped provide them with personal and professional skills.
Third Year student Anna Magombe talked about her involvement in the project and how it was a positive experience.
“The Heartlands High School branding project was a fantastic opportunity to work large-scale on designs that we hope will have a positive effect on the atmosphere and learning at the school. The most satisfying part of the project was seeing the pupils excited about the concept, and knowing that our designs will be a big part of the school’s identity and culture for a long time.”
Course director, Darren Raven, also commented on the work of the students throughout the project.:
“I’m extremely pleased and proud with how professionally the students have worked on this project. They’ve supported and organised themselves efficiently, met the clients expectations with a great creative and beautiful range of design ideas and had fun whilst doing it. It’s been a great mix of both problem-based and work-based learning and it’s fantastic that Heartlands High School are actually going to implement the group’s outcome.”
The students’ work is currently in the development stages in order to produce an implementable design. They continue to be supported by design mentor and FdA alumni Tom McEvoy and their designs will be showcased at the schools official opening in September 2011.
Words by Dominique Major