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Meet Seisho Sumida

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Published date 12 November 2014

UAL’s Alumni Association is a truly international community, with over 200,000 graduates scattered across the globe. In many countries there are teams of alumni working together to help bring the local UAL community closer. These groups organise social events, networking opportunities and open up communication channels to make it easier for everyone to connect and share opportunities and experiences.

If you are returning home after studying in London or relocating to a new country for a new and exciting experience, you can find fellow UAL alumni in the area. Have a look at our list of existing international groups. If there isn’t a group already the Alumni Relations team are happy to guide you through the process of taking the first steps to building a local community.

Meet Seisho, a graduate of Central Saint Martins who has volunteered to start a UAL Alumni group in Tokyo. “I am hoping that the community will create a positive presence in Japanese society and the Art & Design landscape.”

What made you decide to come to London and study Product Design at Central Saint Martins (CSM)?
I came to London to proceed my football career originally. After retiring my dream to be a footballer, I decided to follow my passion towards design. I was interested in studying Graphics/Media Design, but during the foundation diploma course, I discovered the joy of Product Design and ended up there.

What was the best thing CSM taught you?
CSM definitely taught me how to see the picture and make sense of it. It also taught me the skill of being self-directed and self-taught. All of those are important, no matter what you are working on even outside of design.

What was the best thing about living in London?
It was definitely about being able to meet interesting people from different background. Being a capital of creative industry, there were always inspiring events going on.

What one piece of advice would you give a student moving to London?
Try to go out and experience different things, meet people from different background as much as you can. Those things and people you meet will become your important assets.

What have you been doing since graduating?
I’ve been working in the design industry. Recently, I had an amazing opportunity to get involved in setting up a new IDEO office in Tokyo.

What has been your greatest achievement?
I think it is too early for me to answer this question. It will probably be when a project I work on is accomplished and creates a positive impact to the world

Whats next for you?
In a few years time I would like to set up my own business to connect Japan and Europe. I’m not exactly sure in what form yet, It could be a combination of consultant and new business.

What or who is your greatest inspiration?
Culture – I get so much inspiration when I travel to countries I have never been to.

You have agreed to help us start an alumni group in Japan (thank you!), why? And why do you think having a group in Japan is important?
I simply like linking people, I love when chemistry happens between people I introduced. Sharing the experience of being in London and studying Art & Design could make such a strong emotional connection which leads to a great community. I am hoping that the community will create a positive presence in Japanese society and the Art & Design landscape. Japan is going through a paradigm shift in many senses and I think we can play a significant role. It is definitely important to have such a group in Japan.

Join the Japan group on Facebook.