My name is Bradley Pow I am 24 years-of-age. I graduated with a HND Visual Communication at Forth Valley College and now run my own business called Art is an Option, based in Alloa where I live.
I have always had a strong idea of what I wanted to do as a career - combining computers and art. I grew up in Fife, but the advanced higher options at Dunfermline High School were not as specific or expansive compared to what is available at Forth Valley College.
Ready to get a head start building the skills required for my career, I explored other education options and Forth Valley College had the perfect course for what I was looking for.
All of the equipment was up to date and industry standard. It was great having iMacs available and working with the Adobe Creative Suite. The lecturers had great advice based on their own careers and time working within the industry. This was a great insight into the job and helped my learning. Hearing about real design challenges and experiences applied to what we were learning, really made the content relevant and engaging. Having a range of lecturers with their own interests and specialities within their field, opened my eyes to all of the various sub-sets in graphic design and how they work together.
Working with people that shared the same passion inspired me to take my learning further and develop my ability. This combined with having access to advice and opinions from the lecturers, drawing on their years of experience and expertise, allowed me to gain the skills and confidence required to start working in the industry, while still at College.
The final year exhibition provided an excellent springboard to develop my career aspirations whilst allowing me to present my work at a professional level. This helped me to establish what kind of impression I wanted to portray to future clients whilst helping me develop my networking skills.
The lecturers at the college were keen to help us to professionally interact. For example there was a member of Arnold Clark’s marketing team present at the exhibition, as well as other business owners. Creating my own brand, portfolio and business cards for this event, helped me to achieve a level of professionalism that I desired. As part of module coursework, I also had to design a creative and imaginative CV that let me think about the ways in which I could stand out from the crowd. My best memory from FVC was of the final exhibition, it was a great culmination of the course.
I would recommend the College to other people as it gave me a great start to my career. I wouldn’t have been aware of all the potential avenues offered by graphic design without experiencing them on the College course.
College is a great option if you know what you are interested in and want to develop your skills further, or if you want to explore a potential career option that you aren’t sure about. Getting to experience the breadth of an industry is a great experience and can consolidate your career or open up your options.
If I was to sum up my experience at FVC, I would say – Rewarding, inspiring, focused.
Find out more about our HND in Graphic Design (Visual Communication) here.