|01 June 2012|
An eco-friendly phone charger was the winning concept of this year’s Creative Challenge competition for students at the University for the Creative Arts (UCA).
Second year BA (Hons) Architecture student, Anna Berkman, invented a bicycle kit that generates energy for electronic devices using pedal power and magnets, as part of UCA’s annual sustainable innovation programme.
She picked up the £1000 top prize during an awards ceremony at The Roof Gardens in London on 25 May which featured talks from inspirational guests, including former Labour MP Tony Benn.
Tony Benn speaking at the Creative Challenge Awards.
UCA Canterbury student Anna (main picture), 20, who is originally from California, said: “It feels amazing to win the Creative Challenge – it’s been a fantastic experience and I’m thrilled to be the winner.
“I’m certain that the competition will help me achieve my goal of starting up my own architecture practice because it will add prestige to my CV and set me apart from others when I graduate and start looking for clients.
“The Creative Challenge is much more than an ideas contest because at every stage you get to attend master classes and workshops from business experts and major companies, such as Sony, which are an invaluable source of knowledge for any student.”
The Creative Challenge is an exciting educational programme that culminates in a competition for students of all five UCA campuses to come up with an idea for an innovative and sustainable product or service that has enterprising opportunities with commercial potential.
Entrants meet with professionals and experts from the creative industries who offer advice through workshops and seminars. Nearly 40 businesses and organisations offered their services for free during for this year’s Creative Challenge.
Tony Benn said: “I think the Creative Challenge is an exciting concept. I was impressed with the students and how they entered into it with a great spirit of innovation.
“It teaches the students some important techniques of business and politics, which will help them to understand how they can make progress.
“All progress comes when young people get together and say that they can do things a better way than it’s been done before and we need to keep encouraging them to do this.”
Prizes were presented by Oscar-winning filmmaker and UCA graduate, Arnold Schwartzman OBE.
Second prize (£500) went to fellow Architecture student Alex Bones for his idea to make bio-fuel from algae, while third place (£250) was awarded to Pedro Serrano Sanchez who studies MA Sustainable Architecture at UCA Canterbury for his ‘Growing a Shelter’ concept.
All ten finalists will receive invaluable, career-making internships with major companies and organisations in their chosen fields. Placements have been secured at Kanoti, Beige London, Dragon Rouge, Guy Hollaway Architects, HDR, Jedco Product Design, and more.
Finalists also received a Creative Barcode account for secure file sharing and protection of their intellectual property, plus an access to the brand new Innovation Bank – an online portal which provides a safe-trading environment for the buying and selling of IP, licensing, and the co-creation of innovation concepts between creators and other commercialisation experts.
Uwe Derksen, Head of Creative Challenge and Assistant Director of Research & Enterprise at UCA, said: “The Creative Challenge encourages our students to set the pace for the future.
“It’s not just about ideas generation and problem solving, it’s also about developing our students’ business skills, teaching them how to communicate their creative concepts professionally and hopefully, giving them a head start in their careers.”
For more information, visit www.creativechallenge.info .
Full list of winners:
1st Anna Berkman, Architecture, UCA Canterbury
2nd Alex Bones, Architecture, UCA Canterbury
3rd Pedro Serrano Sanchez, MA Sustainable Architecture, UCA Canterbury
Runners up (in alphabetical order):
Sandy Chander, Graphic Design, UCA Maidstone
Marie Christopherson, MA Fashion Management & Marketing, UCA Epsom
Shamini Kulasingham, Fine Art, UCA Farnham
Heather Makin, MA Design, Innovation & Brand Management, UCA Epsom
Neha Marathe, MA Interior Design, UCA Farnham
Danny Taylor, Product Design, UCA Farnham
Shirley Yang, MA Design, Innovation & Brand Management, UCA Epsom
Creative Barcode comment from CEO Maxine Horn
“I have been impressed with the Creative Challenge initiative from the beginning to the final awards ceremony which included a superb speaker line-up. This Challenge was not just submit ideas, pick-a-winner and hand-out prizes. Instead students were fully briefed by industry experts, fully mentored throughout including a series of workshops covering everything from ideas generation through to commercialisation techniques and IP protection, their submissions full evaluated by industry and resulting in work placements for all finalists. Attending the final awards event was a real treat with inspirational speakers such as Gary Waterworth Owen of the Responsibility Alliance and Tony Benn whose speech moved me to tears”.
Congratulations to the winners, all the finalists and to the UCA team – brilliant work.
Notes to editors:
Please contact the UCA press office if you would like to interview Anna Berkman or Uwe Derksen.
The University for the Creative Arts has campuses in Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham, Maidstone and Rochester and is one of Europe’s largest specialist Universities of art, design, architecture, media and communication. With around 7, 000 students studying on a wide range of well-established courses, potential graphic designers’ work alongside budding journalists and pioneering fashion designers in a highly creative environment.