Design and technology teachers experience of industry

"I am thrilled to return to school with a deeper understanding of how a design agency works and the various career opportunities that exist for young people".

Stephanie Tomlison at Bulletproof Design

Bulletproof is an international strategic design brand agency which ‘exist to vanquish design mediocrity and make brands more commercially successful’. This is where I undertook my residency and straight away, I was stunned by the culture of bulletproof- bringing together ‘heart and hustle’ through their pool of talented workforce. I had the opportunity to speak with so many people across the company and this gave me a clear insight about their role. Even though, I have a degree background in Industrial Design, I was still unaware of some of the job opportunities that were on offer.

What interested me, is that you don’t have to be ‘the creative’ to work in a creative industry. For example, you could work in client services or strategy. It fascinated me how the company logistically worked too, with three core hubs looking after different household names such as Cadbury. It was inspiring to see everyone working with such focus and I have not stopped talking about Bulletproof since leaving! I have hired Junior Designers, strategists, a HR team, client services, recruiter, owner and many more and I am operating the classroom as a design consultancy. My pupils LOVE that their attributes can be harnessed for creative industries as well as academic ones. This is something they hadn’t considered in such depth and neither had I. This has changed the way I view teaching and my career, as I feel a new found responsibility to support the young people I work with, and better prepare them for roles within Industry. I want them to realise it is possible, and for them to see and believe it is within their reach. This will run especially true, when we look to arrange for industry experts to come into school and provide talks or workshops, which is something I will look to do more frequently. 

Bulletproof are simply a force to be reckoned with, bringing ‘depth and meaning’ back to brands. I am thrilled to return to school with a deeper understanding of how a design agency works and the various career opportunities that exist for young people. I’m looking forward to working alongside Bulletproof in the future and schools so that we sustain and inspire future design talent. I have also established new found connections, met likeminded people and simply had a fantastic time. I would recommend the teacher in residency programme to everyone at any point in your teaching career. We all have more to learn and room to grow. 

Watch the webinar with Debbie Inman and Stephanie Tomlinson

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