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Why alumni join our international alumni associations and groups

Illustration of arms against a black background
Illustration of arms against a black background

Written by
Eleanor Harvey
Published date
28 July 2020
Man working
Image credit: Alexander Hinnerskov

Alexander Hinnerskov, Denmark

I started the UAL Denmark Alumni Group to…

  • connect with the local creative community and to enable others to do the same.
  • share knowledge and experiences
  • build relations both professional and social

What are the benefits of joining a local alumni group?  

I really enjoy being part of the local alumni group! I have expanded my professional network and have made some friends as well. Being able to discuss projects with likeminded people has had a great impact on my work. I hope my fellow alumni are able to use the group in ways that benefit them and the UAL alumni community.

Man painting in a studio
Image credit: Ian Hsieh

Ian Hsieh, Taiwan

I joined the UAL Taiwan Alumni Association because…

It makes me happy to help others, so during my student years, I was always keen to support freshers and my peers. I was later elected chair of the Taiwanese students' society and organised many activities and exhibitions, which was very helpful in preparing me for my career. That is why a significant part of my work is now curating exhibitions, and helping companies and brands to collaborate with artists and designers.

I enjoy making new friends and working with fresh ideas. Over the years I have become really good at collaborating with different types of artists and designers and built up a great network in this industry.

I get to meet lots of different people from our Taiwanese alumni network, which is great for inspiring new ideas and creativity!

What are the benefits of joining a local alumni association?

Three years ago, we brought together dozens of alumni to help set up Taiwan’s first art-focused “experimental education institution” (high school), with the aim of applying what we have learned overseas to catalyse better art and creative education, “out-of-the-box” critical thinking and experimental spirit in Taiwan. We began adopting more innovative teaching and learning methods to help Taiwanese teachers and students develop their synaesthesia and pursuit of serendipity, discover their unique self, inspire more creative thinking and energy.

Our Taiwanese Alumni Association works with other UK partners (LSE, Imperial College, Cambridge, Oxford and UCL) to organise an annual alumni event, Viva Britannia Ball, along with other civil society and corporate partners. We also organise regular exhibitions, talks and gatherings, including our upcoming life drawing party in August. We are keen to work with alumni associations from other countries on similar events in the future.

Group of people in front of a printed screen
UAL Korean Alumni Association Committee

Ji-Hyun Oh, South Korea

I joined the UAL Korea Alumni Association because…

After graduation, I had to go back home because I couldn’t have an extended visa. Being back in Korea, I didn't have any connections, I didn't even have many Korean alumni friends. In Korea, connections are quite important, especially university connections. That’s why I started to come to the Alumni events.

What are the benefits of joining a local alumni association?

I think the domestic and international connection is getting more important. Now we can share anything on YouTube and Facebook, and we can also collaborate wherever you are. Also, UAL alumni network is so huge globally we can help and collaborate with each other.

Woman in a black polo-necked jumper, against a white background.
Image credit: Melissanthi Spei

Melissa Spei, Greece

I started the UAL Greece Alumni Group because…

It was a perfect way  to meet other creatives, to share ideas and experiences from London and to create a network of talents for future collaborations, creative alliances and friendships.

What are the benefits of joining a local alumni group?

I have met lots of interesting people from all sorts of backgrounds and ages, that remember London and the colleges throughout different phases and stages.

A few companies have also approached the group to post job opportunities and graduates are able to share their work and invite us in special showcases both Athens and London.

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