My current role is Course Leader for Postgraduate Courses in the School of Crafts and Design at the University for the Creative Arts. I currently co-ordinate and manage the School’s taught postgraduate courses at Farnham, maintaining and developing recruitment, retention, curriculum and assessment. I have responsibility for effective delivery of the school’s MA programmes and to undertake a significant teaching role as well as manage the input of specialist tutors.
The School of Craft and Design programmes include MA Ceramics, MA Glass, MA Jewellery, MA Metalwork, MA Product Design and MA Textiles. Through my work on the MA programmes at the University for the Creative Arts, I embrace the opportunity to cross disciplines and share aspects of courses to allow a broad range of learning experiences that benefit jewellery and metalwork students and academic teams.
As part of my teaching role I schedule internal and external staff in relation to the programmes, organising and supervising their work where necessary. I timetable and chair course board meetings and team meetings to enable a good working relationship, smooth running of the programme as well as opportunities to improve and develop the programme, teaching and delivery where and when necessary.
In addition to managing meetings and teaching in relation to the programme, opportunities and extra curriculum activities are communicated via the internal digital blackboard platform. The platform also allows restricted access to student records and for me to update assessment, attendance, health and safety and other related records. As Course Leader, I am responsible for health and safety for a variety of activities including teaching activities, exhibiting internally and externally, offsite study visits, work experience placements and workshop environments.
I frequently teach across all levels of higher education within the jewellery areas, from workshop and technical demonstrations and inductions, to seminars and workshops on areas such as drawing, costing, reflections, research skills, developing ideas and presentation skills. I use a variety of teaching methods to allow for a variety of learners to develop and progress. My own research continually looks into new ways of teaching and sharing of knowledge and information, which feeds back into the taught curriculum.
As MA Course Leader, I write the handbooks and deliver projects that allow students to undertake professional practice elements of their course. This includes finding and connecting with industry for competitions and commission opportunities as well as finding appropriate work placements and experiences in relation to the students’ chosen career aims. I have created a good network of industry connections to allow me to keep up to date within the industry and encourage students and staff to network, build connections and undertake a variety of opportunities to assist their own learning where possible. This has included international collaborations, for example jewellery students at UCA and a course in China communicated and worked together through digital networks to produce individual pieces of work to be physically exhibited in both countries. The staff collaboration developed into a longer relationship, where staff and future students have since visited campus facilities, taster workshops have been provided in the UK workshops for staff and students from China and I have delivered papers and workshops in China. Most recently taking part as curator for the UK selection of the Triple Parade Exhibition in Shanghai and presenting a paper on the past, present and future of the UK jewellery industry at the conference and providing text and articles for the catalogue.
I continually encourage and support students, staff and colleagues in their own personal development, I have a broad experience of mentoring and working with others to develop my own teaching practice as well as assist those around me. Whilst working at the University for the Creative Arts, I have become a very supportive member of the team, assisting with the development of the School’s activities in recruitment, local engagement, industry engagement and staff and student experience and development. I present regularly at conferences and symposiums as well as various opportunities to promote the courses within the school.
Teaching roles have included writing and validating new course documents, and have attended various external validation panels giving me a good experience and understanding of writing jewellery and metalsmithing programmes at various levels.
Review, re-validate and validate experience:
- 2017 External Panel Member for Plymouth College of Art, Postgraduate courses.
- 2016 External Panel Member for Birmingham City University, School of Jewellery, Postgraduate courses.
- 2016 Undertaking course reviews for the Postgraduate courses within the School
- 2010, 2014, 2016 Part of the Undergraduate staff team to review and re-validate courses.
- 2016 External Panel Member for the validation of Foundation Degree Programme, Historic Craft Practices – Metalwork at West Dean College.
- 2013 Part of the staff team undertaking course reviews for the Postgraduate courses within the School
- 2013 External Panel Member for the validation of MA in Visual Islamic and Traditional Arts. At the Princes School of Traditional Art.
- 2012 Internal Validation Panel Member of the Postgraduate courses for the School of Film and Media.
I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and has completed and graduated from a Postgraduate course in Teaching in the Creative Arts for Higher Education. I completed my Master of Arts at Central Saint Martins in 2001 in Design by Project. I am currently studying on a part time route for a PhD at the University for the Creative Arts, validated by University of Arts London.
I contribute regularly to the industry by writing articles for publication, collaborate with various organisations to manage and contribute to symposiums, conferences and exhibitions and have built up an online profile by setting up and continually updating five Network pages for the Association for Contemporary Jewellery. I am also a regular participant on selection and judging panels such as Rising Stars, the Crafts Council Hothouse programme, Craft and Design awards, Farnham Art Society annual exhibitions and the Festival of Crafts. I also regularly review publications for Bloomsbury publishers and most recently had a book published with Crowood Press.
More recently I set up and ran Future Craft, winning research funding for the publication; Future Craft ran in March 2018 as the first in a series of biennial conferences that will offer an opportunity for discussion, engagement and debate across a broad continuum of craft. The ‘Entrepreneurship or Enterprise?’ conference celebrated the continual innovation of the jewellery and silversmithing industries, learning, development, business and variety of contexts and markets they inhabit. The next Future Craft Conference will take place in Australia in 2020.
Enabling students to develop and flourish is at the heart of everything I undertake, sharing knowledge, information, challenging and pushing the boundaries where possible. Having a role within a higher education has developed my management, planning and organisation skills as well as the ability to stay flexible and open to opportunities to allow collaboration, development and for something outstanding.