Undergraduates aim for place at Harrods

Two undergraduates from the Hugh Baird University Centre had the chance of a lifetime recently when they competed for a Summer placement at world-renowned department store Harrods.

Chiara Malvoni and Kate Hill are both undergraduates on the Foundation Degree in Visual Merchandising and Promotional Design, which is validated by the University of Central Lancashire. They were given the opportunity to take part in the Graduate Challenge at the VM and Display Show, the longest running exhibition for the industry. Competing against students from London College of Fashion and Hertford Regional College, the strict design brief for the competition was set by Harrods.

The undergraduates were tasked with creating a window design showcasing a luxury brand sold in the Knightsbridge store. They were asked to demonstrate their technical ability and creative talent by producing a visually stimulating, luxury and brand-aware display that echoed the qualities, skills and craftsmanship behind the brand. Each student had the opportunity to create a window display capturing the aesthetic of the brand but also reflecting elements such as the brand's unique selling point, history and style.

Chiara was delighted to be awarded Bronze for her entry which was inspired by iconic Italian fashion brand Valentino, whilst competitors from Hertford Regional College took both first and second places.

Chiara said:

“This was the first competition I’ve ever entered and although I was nervous it was an amazing experience. Just attending the VM and Display Show was inspirational. We were able to see the high standards expected by some of the biggest names in the business and I saw so many cutting edge concepts that will inspire me for the rest of my course. Achieving Bronze in the Graduate Challenge against tough competition has boosted my confidence and I’m excited to see what I can do next.”

Lecturer in Visual Merchandising and Promotional Design at the Hugh Baird University Centre, Peter Taylor, said:

“It was a privilege for our undergraduates to be invited by Harrods to take part in the Graduate Challenge. What an incredible opportunity for them to showcase what they’ve learned so far. We are thrilled with Chiara’s third place and very proud of both students for representing the Hugh Baird University Centre so well.”

If you are interested in finding out more about the Visual Merchandising and Promotional Design courses at the Hugh Baird University Centre, click here for more information or why not visit our Degree Show and Open Day to view the work of our creative undergraduates.

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