For students and graduates: Creative Opportunities has expanded to bring you more opportunities. Our new-look site will continue to advertise paid jobs and internships, now with added volunteering roles, scholarships and competitions. Volunteering roles will be advertised for charities or voluntary organisations, and competitions will be relevant and offer worthwhile rewards.

About creative opportunities and policy for employers

The University may amend this policy at any time. Please check this page from time to time to note any changes made, as they will be binding.

About the creative opportunities platform

  • About us

    “For graduates seeking their first role in the creative industries, University of the Arts London's Creative Opportunities page is the perfect place to help get a foot in the door.” Creative Boom

    Creative opportunities is a platform promoting creative industry roles and opportunities for students and alumni from the University of the Arts London (UAL). Careers and Employability run this service. It’s the go-to hub for art, design, communications and performance graduates.

    We promote jobs, paid internships, volunteering roles, scholarships and competitions. Our mission is to provide genuine career progression through industry experience, internships, mentorship, grants, funding and bursaries for our students and alumni to be able to do something they love and make a living. We advertise jobs in the UK and internationally, featuring creative roles from companies from both creative and non-creative industries.

    We promote jobs and internships which pay at least minimum wage. We allow freelance roles to be negotiated between employer to freelancer. Volunteering roles must be from charities or voluntary organisations. These roles are not paid, however may offer expenses and other benefits such as a mentor, references and feedback. We recognise that these opportunities can help you to gain direct valuable industry insight whilst developing your skills and experience to progress your career. Competitions will be relevant and offer worthwhile rewards.

    We especially welcome creative internships and graduate opportunities. Our students and graduates bring creativity and innovation to any role, important for keeping businesses relevant and thriving in our changing economy and politics.

    Advertise your creative vacancies with us for free if you are a direct employer. Further information about our guidelines are below.

Opportunities platform expansion

  • Background

    Since 2009, the creative opportunities jobs board’s primary aim has been to promote UK and international paid jobs and internships. The website is public and allows UAL students and graduates as well as non-UAL jobseekers to search and apply for roles. The current policy for employers posting a job or an internship is to adhere to the government minimum wage rates, however, we recommend London-based employers to pay the London Living Wage.

  • Current situation

    We understand that the route to employment and a successful career in the creative industries is unlike any other profession. Creative degrees do not always lead to directly correlating graduate roles with clear progression. Neither do they guarantee entry into a particular industry. Routes to employment include a higher proportion of building networks and using contacts, freelancing or starting a company. Challenges to enter the job market have become much tougher since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. Since the first lockdown, we have seen a decrease in the number of roles posted on Creative Opportunities. With forecasts and news articles reporting more potential job losses, we can only predict the job market will take a while to recover.

    From the High Fliers report, The Graduate Market in 2020, 40% of Graduate recruiters featured in the research warned that “in today’s competitive job market, it was either ‘not very likely’ or ‘not at all likely’ that a graduate who’d had no previous work experience at all with any employers would be successful during their selection process and be made a job offer, irrespective of their academic achievements or the university they had attended.”

    In the meantime, UAL Careers and Employability are striving to adapt so they can support students and graduates to make a living doing what they love. The value of experience in developing a graduate CV and credibility in business environment is often as important as the paid aspect of work.

  • Vision

    With recruitment cycles recovering from the pandemic, now is the time to use our labour market insights to upgrade the jobs board into an opportunities hub. We recognise that students and graduates can gain valuable skills and experience which will help in their career progression from opportunities outside of traditional paid roles. Our objectives in doing so are to provide more opportunities by which University of the Arts London (UAL) students and alumni can develop skills, experience for genuine career progression.

    In addition to paid jobs and internships, the new-look Creative Opportunities board will promote other opportunities including competitions, scholarships and volunteering opportunities. As before, both UK-based and international opportunities are welcome. These will allow for genuine career progression and open up more options for our students and graduates. Our policy will expand to refuse the promotion of competitions where prizes are solely ‘for exposure’. Policies such as refusing unpaid internships, and paid jobs that do not meet the minimum wage will continue. Our focus will be on opportunities in the creative sector leading to graduate level experience. Other criteria such as level of pay, skill development, mentoring and support will be considered.

    Alongside the Creative Opportunities board we will develop resources to help students and graduates to analyse and think critically about an opportunity and if it’s right for them. The advertising on the board will be clear so students can make informed decisions, fitting with their schedules, skills and experience they would like to gain and salary requirements.

  • Why UAL?

    For the second year running, UAL is the global leader of undergraduate creative education, according to the QS University World Rankings by Subject 2020. UAL ranked 2nd for Art and Design, next to the Royal College of Art, dedicated to postgraduate Art and Design studies.

    Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) 2019 figures revealed UAL graduate entrepreneurs are leading a start-up and social enterprise boom which saw more than £822 million generated for the UK economy in 2018.

    A recent study by Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance showed a higher percentage of UAL's graduates go on to become business leaders than from any other UK university. Involving over 9.5 million former students, it revealed that 19.85% of UAL graduates went onto lead businesses and almost one in ten (9.21%) used their degrees to form their own start-ups.

    Further policy details are given below. For further clarification, do feel free to contact us at: jobsonline@arts.ac.uk

Opportunities - The definitions and conditions of the opportunity types we promote

  • Jobs - Including graduate programs, international and freelance roles

    As a paid position of regular continuous employment, all jobs posted must meet government minimum wage rates.

    We recommend London-based employers to pay the London Living Wage. Third party employers such as recruitment agencies can post jobs subject to a fee. We will not advertise jobs located in a private household or from private individuals working with children. Any roles working with children must require a DBS background check and be submitted by an agency or company.

    Graduate Programs

    Within the job category, we will highlight graduate fast track programs which enable our graduates to learn and develop skills.

    International roles

    UAL has a large international student body. We welcome international roles, which meet minimum wage requirements in their respective countries for our international students to apply for.

    We will not advertise roles where students or alumni must pay a cost to apply or are required to invest in the role.

    Freelance roles

    Freelance roles are not internships, or flexi-hour temporary jobs. We regard freelance roles as projects where budget and work time are negotiated between employer and freelancer.

    Freelancer rates are usually higher than the salary for a job because self-employed freelancers use this to pay for benefits employers will give salaried staff. A few examples include software licensing fees, equipment, sick days, National Insurance and taxes.

    A guide on paying freelancers can be found at the Freelance Fees Guide. Rates will vary according to the experience level of the creative. An estimate would be an hourly rate of £15 for a student, £20 for a graduate, and varied rates for middleweight to those who are substantially experienced. Most freelancers can adapt to budgets and length of projects.

  • Internships

    Internships are paid entry-level roles lasting from a week to a year where support or mentoring is provided, unlike a job or freelancer opportunity where one is expected to work independently.

    All internships must meet government minimum wage rates. We do not promote unpaid internships. Internship roles require a supervisor to be named to show that the intern has a mentor and learning support. We will not advertise internships where students and/or recent alumni must pay a cost to apply or are required to invest in the role.

  • Competitions

    We will promote competitions to students and graduates which provide genuine career progression through industry experience, internships, mentorship, grants, funding and bursaries.

    Competitions for exposure only, or where there is a disproportionate benefit to the student, will not be accepted.

    Competitions requiring an entry fee will not be accepted.

  • Volunteering

    Volunteering roles must abide by government policy in that workers are working for a charity, voluntary organisation, associated fundraising body or a statutory body. These roles are not salaried, except for limited expenses such as reasonable travel or lunch.

    We prioritise roles which give graduate level experience, career progression and feature employer support. This includes having a selection criteria for volunteers, a named line manager or supervisor, a specified role description, references and credit being given, and formal appraisals.

  • Scholarships

    A scholarship is financial aid put towards an opportunity to learn or gain valuable experience.

    We are happy to promote scholarship opportunities which allow underrepresented students to apply for roles.

Legal considerations

  • Complaints policy

    Creative opportunities is an opportunities platform to promote vacancies to jobseekers as an intermediary. By using the website, users adhere to the terms and conditions agreed upon when creating a profile.

    The University reserves the right at its absolute discretion to refuse any request for registration, or to cancel any existing registration, for any reason whatsoever.

    The University has no control over, and is not responsible for, the content or accuracy of the User Content including, without limitation, the Job Postings.

    We will block a user in the instance of more than one complaint received against an organisation or jobseeker. We do not have the resources to investigate beyond this.

    We recommend contacting ACAS for disputes between employers and employees or alternatively, the Citizens Advice Bureau, CAB.

    The University may amend this policy at any time. Please check this page from time to time to note any changes made, as they will be binding.

Appendix

  • Scholarship example

    Think Pacific Virtual Internship Scholarships

    Fully funded places for a remote four to 12-week internship in partnership with the Fijian Ministry to foster global understanding, contribute to international development and increase relationships between the Fiji Islands and global university students.

  • Graduate program example

    Estée Lauder Companies

    The Presidential Associate Program is an 18-month rotational program specially designed for undergraduates. This program integrates customized professional rotations, continuous leadership development, coaching, mentoring, and hands-on practical experience. It offers three rotations allowing associates to gain company and business insights. Each rotation explores new areas of the company to learn to apply knowledge to strategic business projects.

  • Competition examples

    The Mayor’s Entrepreneur Competition

    Students pitch an innovative concept before a panel of judges. They can attend two pre-application workshops where students can learn how to develop their ideas, find inspiration and meet like-minded students from universities across London to form a team. Four winners will receive £20k in funding and mentorship, with finalists given feedback on ideas from both workshops and judges.

    Hispano Suiza Car Design Contest

    Students attending international design schools submit design proposals reflecting the history of the brand, but adapted to current or future times. The prize-winner receives a four-month internship grant in the Hispano Suiza Design and Style Department in Barcelona.

    YAZOO Artist Collaboration

    Students and recent graduates to upload 5 original art pieces, submit a synopsis, sketch and mood board as designs for YAZOO cans and merchandising material. Ten finalists to receive 2 cases of YAZOO drink, 2nd and 3rd place winners receive £1,000 each. The final winner artwork to receive an additional £4,000.