Richie Manu is an award-winning course tutor, teaching the MA Applied Imagination at Central Saint Martins (CSM). He is an author, creative, speaker, creative disrupter and self-confessed troublemaker.
With a background in design and branding, he specialises in personal and professional development, working with start-ups and entrepreneurs, devising strategies on distinctiveness and professional branding. This is reflected in his best-selling book, You: Rebranded.
Richie has taught briefly in Hong Kong where he was a lecturer on the World Design Summer Camp working with students across the globe. He is also a TEDx speaker and an occasional broadcaster and has featured on podcasts and interviews for the BBC and Design Council.
Richie has been instrumental in supporting the creation of this association as an internal member of staff and we caught up with him to find out why he got involved.
What made you want to take on the role of Vice President in the Alumni of Colour Association (AOCA)?
First and foremost, I am an alumnus of UAL. I graduated back in 2006 and immediately saw the benefit of being a member of a supportive alumni association.
Why was the association created?
The Alumni Association is a supportive community for graduates. But there appears to be no direct way of supporting alumni of colour as they enter an industry that is already underrepresented. By creating an Alumni of Colour community group, it would generate a platform that would firstly give alumni of colour a platform to showcase their achievement and also attract employers and businesses who are invested in making a positive impact on diversity in the creative industries.
What do you hope to achieve?
In the future, I hope that we won’t actually need the AOCA as we see positive changes happening in the industry. But for now, it is vital that we use as many platforms and channels to address diversity and showcase talent from graduates of colour. I also hope that the events will be a source of inspiration for guests who will also use this as a vibrant networking platform.
How can alumni get involved?
Come to events, but more importantly, let other alumni (they do not have to be of colour) know about the events. This is important as the relationships that will forge future collaborations are happening now. The alumni of all backgrounds are going to be future leaders, company owners, creative directors and employees. It is crucial that networks are fostered now.
Join the AOCA mailing list to find out about their upcoming events and news: firstname.lastname@example.org