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“Creativity is absolutely essential to the success of businesses," says UCA's Sarah Clark

With the Creative Industries being one of the largest growth sectors in the British economy, Sarah Clark, Head of the School of Further Education at UCA, has said that creativity is one of the biggest influencers in business success, and both business acumen and creative flair should be nurtured and developed side-by-side.

“Previously, education has either developed creative skills or business skills rather than developing both skillsets together,” says Sarah, who leads Further Education at UCA, which includes the two-year Extended Diploma in Business. “We need to ensure that the needs of industries are reflected in the education offered throughout the sector, and that we educate students so that they know how to be entrepreneurs, self-starters and creative businessmen and women.

“There is now a growing recognition that creativity and innovation in businesses depends on the skills and attitudes that specialist universities such as UCA have taught for many years as part of a creative education.

“The creative industries are one of the largest growth areas for the UK economy, so connecting with these industries and producing students who have the right skills to enter them is crucial to their continued success and longevity.”

Harmonising business acumen and creativity, and strengthening innovation and ideas generation in students, should start well in advance of undergraduate study, Sarah explains. “Students should be developing both the practical and academic knowledge to enable them to progress on to Higher Education, Higher Apprenticeships, or to start working in the business world. The opportunities that come from the ability to use both skillsets interchangeably are plentiful.

“A more traditional route of study, such as A-levels, often sees students study business and creative subjects as separate disciplines, before they progress on to undergraduate study; however, combining these skills at pre-degree level can prove essential in equipping students to succeed in today’s markets.”

Find out more about our Further Education courses and the Business School for the Creative Industries.