Hundreds of students graduating from the Norwich University College of the Arts (Nuca) yesterday were told their creative talents were more in demand than ever.

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About 400 artists, designers, photographers, film makers and animators were recognised during three ceremonies at the city’s St Andrew’s Hall.

The students have spent the past few years working hard on their diplomas, foundation degrees, undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in a range of disciplines spanning art, media and design.

Addressing students during the lunch time ceremony, chair of governors Graham Creelman told them their skills would be more in demand than ever as they entered a difficult jobs market. “You are probably sick to the teeth of people telling you how difficult the graduate market is. I have been saying something like that from this platform since 2008,” he said. “Times are still tough, but I think there is a change out there.

“I hope it has been increasingly understood that art and artists are not just decorative additions to the economy. They are essential if we are to move out of this rut in which we seem to be stuck.”

Joining students for their special day were family, friends, a host of faculty members, including proud Nuca principal John Last and students’ union president Mike Hewes. He told the graduates: “Think back to when you came here. You are probably more professional, more organised and more capable. You have gained a lot more than a degree certificate.”

Each of yesterday’s graduation ceremonies also saw an honorary doctorate awarded to an inspirational figure in the creative arts industry.

David Juda, owner of the Annely Juda gallery in London representing artists including David Hockney and Anthony Caro, was honoured during the morning ceremony celebrating art and postgraduate students.

Former University of East Anglia student Adrian Wootton, pictured left with John Last, who is chairman of the London Film Council, received his doctorate alongside Nuca’s media students.

And critically-acclaimed illustrator Graham Rawle was awarded his honorary degree as part of the final ceremony of the day for design students.

Thanking Nuca for his honour, Mr Wootton, who is chief executive of Film London and charged with promoting British film, said his career had begun in Norwich. While completing his film and television studies at UEA, he had worked at Cinema City in Norwich. “I started working in that cinema, tearing tickets, cleaning loos,” he said.

“Without that formative experience – starting very much at the bottom – I don’t think I would have ever got into cinema exhibition and had the great, great pleasure and fun I have had over the last 25 years, being involved in the making, the talking about and the writing about movies.”

He called his return the Norwich a “homecoming” and said he was looking forward to many return visits in the future as he takes on the role of visiting professor in film and media at Nuca.

5 comments

  • Imagine what you will but who are any of you to judge. Getting off their arses to do something they love and to potentially work in an industry they love, is surely better than claiming every benefit they can get their hands on?! You probably think they sit around drawing pretty pictures or something when in actual fact, artists and designers would have created the very site you are taking your time to comment on, and any other websites which companies need for their businesses to strive. Graphic Designers will be designing the books and magazines you read, the apps you use. From food and drink packaging to advertisements on billboards, logos for businesses and creating entire brands. A hell of a lot goes in to the process of creating everything you see. I'm not saying every piece of design is good but just because you don’t appreciate it or find it useful, that doesn’t mean it won’t be to other people, because to most it is extremely essential. Many students also go on to becoming Marketing and Advertising Directors in highly paid sectors. The other courses offered there are Textiles, Fine Art, Photography, Game Design and even Architecture. You can believe some of the courses are pointless and unessential all you like, but imagine a world without all of that. Some of the graduates lead some of the most successful agencies in the country. Oscar winning Harry Potter Production Designer Stuart Craig is just one example of a successful NUCA graduate. Not everyone will be successful, yes, but that goes for everything and any course studied at any University. Smaller Universities were required to include 'College' in their name. It never meant they weren’t a real University. The institution has been delivering some of the best education in art and design in the country, well before many modern Universities existed, and after almost 170 years of creative education excellence, applications for places have almost doubled attracting outstanding creative students from across the UK and internationally. Now the University is set to be formally recognised as Norfolk's second university and ‘College’ will be taken out of their name.

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    littlered

    Thursday, July 5, 2012

  • "Norwich University College of the Arts" Shurely shome mishtake. Pretentious moi or what? It's Norwich Art School. Full of art school ----heads.

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    Disgusted of Norwich South

    Wednesday, July 4, 2012

  • As a graduate of NSA some 20+ years ago maybe the posters scoffing the school should read what it takes to graduate from there. It's not just painting a pretty picture to get a degree with honours. Design students move on to top notch jobs in the industry in London and overseas like I am in NYC. Perhaps next time you eat or drink something out of a package, or buy a car, or watch a TV programme, or gosh, I don't know, actually *read* a book you'll probably find it was designed by a Norwich graduate. I'm sorry we arrive like spoiled little brats and spend our money boosting your local community. Or perhaps the posters are bitter they never got to leave Norwich and graduate from somewhere? We also don't care whether or not the college has university status and nearly all of us will say we graduated from the art school and not some poncy name made up to keep administrators happy. I loved the city of Norwich and always will, but happy to be away from the locals making snarky comments online with soiled y-fronts.

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    AReader

    Thursday, July 5, 2012

  • As a graduate of NSA some 20+ years ago maybe the posters scoffing the school should read what it takes to graduate from there. It's not just painting a pretty picture to get a degree with honours. Design students move on to top notch jobs in the industry in London and overseas like I am in NYC. Perhaps next time you eat or drink something out of a package, or buy a car, or watch a TV programme, or gosh, I don't know, actually *read* a book you'll probably find it was designed by a Norwich graduate. I'm sorry we arrive like spoiled little brats and spend our money boosting your local community. Or perhaps the posters are bitter they never got to leave Norwich and graduate from somewhere? We also don't care whether or not the college has university status and nearly all of us will say we graduated from the art school and not some poncy name made up to keep administrators happy. I loved the city of Norwich and always will, but happy to be away from the locals making snarky comments online with soiled y-fronts.

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    AReader

    Thursday, July 5, 2012

  • I imagine the only useful talents that these students can offer the economy involve serving fries and big mac's....oh and of course they allow us to have a hearty chuckle about the fact that they have been to...ahem...."university"...I better stop it right now, all this giggling makes me worry I'm at risk of soiling my undercrackers...

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    merrydancer

    Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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