EPM x AUB = Industry Brief Week: The Next Generation of Designers

EPM has been back at Arts University Bournemouth for another exciting year with its design team holding an industry brief for Visual Communications Level 5 students at Arts University Bournemouth. The challenge? To create digital solutions for common problems faced by university students and tailor their app to one of four themes – finance, diet and cooking, networking and connecting, and work-life balance. Here are their impressions of the day:…

…We were impressed by the teams’ creativity and enthusiasm, and the innovative ideas they generated were truly inspiring. Our team provided tutorials and workshops to guide them along the way, and we were blown away by the final products presented by the students.

We were excited to see the passion displayed by the next generation of designers and creatives as they tackle real-world challenges.

Day one:

Day one of the brief week at Arts University Bournemouth was a great success, We met with the Visual Communications teaching team to go over the schedule for the week and then introduced ourselves to the students. We provided some background on EPM, who we are, and what we do.

We then set the brief for the week, challenging the students to create a digital application that would assist other university students in their daily life, whether that’s to help with networking, financial management, or cooking advice. The students split into groups and began brainstorming some ideas.

To kick off the idea-generation process, we held two workshops. The first, led by our Lead Design Strategist Dot, focused on thinking outside the box and developing ideas from all angles. The students were encouraged to think about what apps they use, what they like about them, what they dislike, and what features they wish these apps could have. The buzz in the room was palpable as students shared their thoughts and ideas.

After lunch, our Head of Digital Francesca led the second workshop, which focused on user personas as well as UX and UI principles. She emphasised the importance of keeping the user in mind when designing a project and shared tips on how to create a detailed user persona that would help guide their design decisions.

By the end of the day, each group had a solid understanding of what they wanted to develop over the next week we were already impressed with the creativity and ideas they had generated in such a short period of time. We’re looking forward to seeing what they’ll create next!

Day two:

After a weekend break, we returned to Arts University Bournemouth to check in with the Visual Communications students and see how their projects were progressing. We were thrilled to see that all of the teams had put in a lot of work over the weekend to develop their ideas further.

It was clear that the students had really taken on board all of the knowledge and guidance we had shared in the idea generation and user persona workshops. Each team had a clear understanding of what they were creating and were enthusiastic about the progress they had made.

We took the time to meet with each team individually and talked through what they were working on. We offered support and guidance where we could, and it was great to see their designs beginning to take shape.

We were impressed with the progress the students had made so far and their enthusiasm for the project and couldn’t wait to see how their ideas continue to develop over the course of the week!

Day three:

The final day of our industry brief arrived at AUB, and there was a great atmosphere as we did our final talk with the students, thanking them for their commitment to the task and expressing our excitement to see their presentations and designs.

We then watched each group present their digital solution, and it was evident that every group had a fantastic concept. The presentations were impressive, ranging from apps designed to help with learning to cook to investment and financial advice apps.

Each group had thought through the process, kept the user in mind, and created some stunning visual designs. After all of the presentations finished, our judging panel deliberated over who should be the winning team.

Our panel decided that the winning team was a group of students who created an application named CRIT. This app would help students give anonymous feedback, allowing creatives to gain confidence in their work. The team of students who designed CRIT was made up of Toby Archer, Alex Bartlett, Krisztina Mayer, and Tonya Mazaeva.

Krisztina explained that one of the main takeaways from working on the brief was learning to prioritise the user experience and focus on aesthetics afterwards. She also said that thinking about the small issues a user might face while using the app was one of the more significant challenges.

CRIT impressed us from concept to design, and we could see that the team had worked collaboratively and hard to provide a fantastic final product. It would give students the ability to receive feedback from other universities and industry professionals and get recognized by design agencies.

We had a fantastic time at AUB working with the talented Visual Communications students. We were impressed by the dedication and creativity each team showed throughout the brief week. It was a pleasure to see up-and-coming design talent in action and we have no doubt that these students will have successful careers in the industry.

We would like to thank AUB and the Visual Communications teaching team for inviting us to host the brief week. It was an honour to share our experience and knowledge with such an enthusiastic group of students. We hope that our contributions have been helpful to the students in their development and that they will continue to pursue their passion for design.

We look forward to seeing what the future holds for these talented individuals. We wish them all the best as they continue their journey in the world of design.


To see all of the finished designs go to our LinkedIn page.

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