Schools Out – 5 things creative grads and school leavers could consider after the end of term …

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Congratulations! After exciting and challenging years of doing what you love, you are graduating. The world is your oyster – now is a time of great change in the creative industries, particularly in the UK, and it’s a very exciting time to be entering the field. If you are still deciding what to do next, LightForge Academy has some guidelines and suggestions on how to move forward from here.

1. Intern

A willingness to learn will take you far in the creative industries – recruiters are actively looking for graduates with a creative eye and a can-do attitude. So, if you are looking to explore your options in a work environment, or test out a particular field before committing to full-time employment, interning could be your best first step. This could last anywhere between a week and six months, possibly even longer, and you may be offered a permanent job at the end if you decide that this is the area of work for you.

2. Build your portfolio

On top of a good work ethic, a strong portfolio is very important to showcase your ability and make you stand out. You’ll need to be able to demonstrate your knowledge of materials, such as tools or software, as well as a sense of personal artistic taste and flair. If you are looking to build your expertise before seeking employment, you could use your time to explore new aspects of your creative field, or create more work using the skills you already have under your belt. Your newfound freedom as a graduate may change the way you work – use this time to get creative and think outside the box.

3. Travel

Exploring new places allows you to introduce yourself to a new way of life that will build your interpersonal skills and/or even influence your artistry. Travelling anywhere around the world will allow you to learn about planning, communication, problem-solving and develop a great deal of confidence, especially if you travel alone. As well as using the time abroad to build your portfolio, you could also work or volunteer, which is great to add to your CV when you’re ready for a job in the creative industries.

4. Get a job

If you already know exactly which creative field you want to enter into, apply for a job! Rather than interning, go straight for a junior role where you will be given strong responsibilities and opportunities from the outset. The ever-changing nature of the industry means that skills requirements will often readapt, and graduates can fill these skills gaps with their up-to-date knowledge from their university courses.

5. Last-mile training courses, like at LightForge Academy

Have you ever considered a career in Film, TV, Animation, Games or VFX? Across the UK, many high quality VFX, games and media courses are available​, though you may still need last-mile training to equip you with the key skills that can secure commercial employment​. LightForge Academy is a new, dedicated learning environment for the creative industries. They are industry-led, and passionate about bridging the gap between creative graduates and the career that they want. The tutors share their time teaching and working on Film and Games projects – this in turn gives you access to real insight and experience, and an opportunity for an exciting and fulfilling creative career. They offer 4-week to 12-week courses designed to develop your expertise in an area of your choice, providing you with the precise skills that recruiters in Film, TV and Games are looking for. Find out more about the courses we run, what skills they can give you and how we ensure these help you determine the right path to a rewarding career at or follow us on social media…

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