As a creative student there are many different responsibilities you may have while on your placement and each role varies with the company. From UX Designer to a Fashion Studio Intern, you can gain and develop your skills in the real world.

Some students have translated concepts into flows, wireframes and mock-ups which are intuitive to a user’s needs.They were also in touch with clients to understand their users and their business goals and collaborate with other members of the team to investigate design issues. There are many duties of a UX designer, which require a broad skill set and a positive attitude as you are primarily client facing and talking to a lot of users. One student was given a unique role in the business for all internal UX requests where they dealt with print, pitch deck proposals, website designs and more.

In the past, a graphic design role has also involved anything from coming up with ideas and designs for infographics, tip sheets and eBooks, to social media posts, direct mails and landing pages. You could also be working on a range of media across print and digital designs and have the responsibility of ensuring amends are completed accurately across all brand collateral. A previous student had this experience and they worked with the marketing team in order to establish client objectives and how the designer’s work could be progressed in a way that accommodates everyone’s needs. 

Another graphic design student learnt about validated testing, atomic design and its value in boiler plates and large scale design work, which they thoroughly enjoyed. Research was a heavy component for one student but they were still able to be creative when building wires and high-fidelity visuals. The student mentions that there was a healthy balance between research and design which improves the end result tenfold as you have clear vision, strategy, and reasoning for an approach.

Every day can be varied. A typical day for one student was receiving their brief in the mornings and spending around an hour sketching out ideas for how to lay the content out on the page and then later on talk through the concept with their team to make sure they are on the right track.They say it is much easier to start working on things like this when you have a plan. 

Some designers have also undertaken roles in projects that weren’t typical graphic designer roles and shadowed directors and producers creating video content and found that they really enjoyed that experience.

Fashion students have had a similar experience.

One fashion student worked with the Quality Assurance department as a Clothing Technical Assistant. She had the experience of testing children’s clothing, which is a particularly high-risk area and attending and running fit sessions ensuring best fit for purpose and doing general admin tasks. She was also involved in various projects like writing a quarterly supplier newsletter, creating a series of Illustrator Flats showing suppliers how to fold different types of clothing to avoid creasing during transportation (see below) and designing care labels for small soft accessories (such as ties, bowties and handkerchiefs).

Another student spent a lot of time running errands and interacting with factories and customers, sampling and toiling designs and assisting with the organisation and tidying of the studio. They also spent the last few weeks of my time there being solely responsible for pattern laying and cutting out the pattern pieces for all of the in-house production. This was a big responsibility, as they had to ensure they matched the sample garments, and that no mistakes were made.

Other fashion roles can involve sorting out fabric selections, contacting and liaising with factories and suppliers, pulling out suitable trims and fabrics from the archive, updating and organising the design boards and inputting all of the season information on spreadsheets.

Students say that they developed many skills whilst working without even realizing, with communication skills being a major one, due to the collective  experience of having to approach different people across and outside the business in order to complete some tasks.