Campaign calls for backing for Wales’ creative university courses in wake of pandemic
A new campaign is calling for support for Wales’ creative industries university courses in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Universities Wales have called for backing for the nation’s creative industries university courses as a poll showed strong parental backing for the contribution they make to the economy.
The study, conducted by Savanta ComRes for Universities UK, reveals that nearly two thirds – 65 per cent – of parents agree that creative courses at university benefit the UK economy, while more than two thirds – 69 per cent – say that students gain vital creative skills at university which are essential to powering the UK’s creative industries.
But there are fears that this creative output could now be under threat, with two thirds – 67 per cent – of parents acknowledging that creative industries have suffered greatly as a result of the pandemic.
Prior to the pandemic, the creative industries was the UK’s fastest-growing sector, generating over £116 billion for the economy and directly employing 2.1 million people.
Amanda Wilkinson, Director of Universities Wales said that universities’ creative industries courses were “vital to the success of our creative industries”.
“Here in Wales, our universities are a key contributor to the creative industries, providing a critical pipeline of talent, skills and opportunities to a sector that employs more than 56,000 people across Wales,” she said.
“From music to films, TV programmes to video games, universities are places where creative ideas flourish, where innovation happens, and where businesses employing thousands of people are started. They’re where the nation’s creative sparks are ignited.”
In response, Universities UK has launched MadeAtUni: Creative Sparks, a campaign to showcase the creative talent produced by UK universities and encourage the Government to promote and support the importance of creativity and creative courses.
Creative Sparks from Welsh universities celebrated in the campaign include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Tim Routledge – Technical Theatre graduate of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama who was the lighting designer for the iconic Stormzy set at Glastonbury 2019 and the London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.
- Osian Williams – an award-winning film maker who credits his success to the support he received while studying at Bangor University
- Two graduates from Wrexham Glyndŵr University who started Focus Wales, an international festival featuring emerging talent alongside big-name acts
- Theatre students from the University of Wales Trinity St David who are working with the charity Oasis to run workshops for refugees and asylum seekers who have settled in Cardiff
- Annabelle Apsion – actress and Swansea University English and Drama graduate best known for playing Monica Gallagher in the hit television series Shameless.
- The 40+ students and graduates from the University of South Wales who worked on the BBC adaptation of Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials
- Design researchers from Cardiff Metropolitan University who created HUG – an interactive device which improves the mental wellbeing of people with advanced dementia.
- Creative Cardiff – an award-winning network for the creative industries established by Cardiff University.
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