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Alumni

Sam Clark

Career Path: Managing Director & Founder, Conjure
Location: London, UK

I was hooked on digital graphics from an early age, and knew that I wanted a career creating graphics. The web as we know it now was maturing and so web design was an obvious place to start. I studied a range of disciplines including 3D, motion graphics and what's now known as UI throughout my time at Northumbria University. I landed a job for a web design agency in Newcastle after graduating where I stayed for a couple of years, before moving to another web organisation in the South of England. I was lucky enough to be working on apps at the very beginning of the smartphone revolution and so moved to London and founded Conjure, with a view to be a mobile first digital agency.

What are you doing now?Sam Clark

Today I run Conjure full time, we've branched out from pure mobile into vehicle dashboard design and position ourselves as a future interface agency. I look after a team of 17, spending my time overseeing the design output and account managing our key clients.

What was it about Northumbria that made you decide to study here?

Moving down Moving down from Scotland to Newcastle was exciting. Northumbria had a great vibe, on the day I came to visit the Quad area was full of students sitting on the grass and chatting about a diverse range of subjects. I was hooked. The tutors I met with were really switched on to the trends of digital design and I wanted to be part of it.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

The classes where small (there was around 20 in mine) and my fellow students were smart and dialled in. It was competitive, but in a good way. We all wanted to produce the best graphics, the slickest animations, the freshest websites; it really made you push yourself. The tutors weren't overbearing, and were more interested in guiding my passion rather than forcing me down a particular route.

How connected was your course with industry?

The guest speakers weren't particularly great, but in Northumbria's defence I studied there quite a while back and digital (and the industry in Newcastle) has exploded since so I'm sure the quality is now of a higher order. That said the university invited a trade group called Code Works Connect to speak, where I met the founder of the agency TH_NK. This ultimately landed me my first job which I'm forever grateful for.

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals/ give your career an edge?

The variety of the course was one of it's great strengths. I had a good knowledge of a string of disciplines so I didn't have to fake it during interviews. The Code Works session got me my first job, can't be more useful than that.

What was the best thing about your course?

My fellow course mates - through luck or design we all had interesting and complimentary skills and backgrounds. While it was competitive we felt like a family.

Which skills/knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now throughout your career?

From day one we were pushed to present all of the work we did. Presentation after presentation drilled us all in effective speaking and pitching, crucial skills in the modern design workplace.

What did you enjoy most about your time at Northumbria University?

The energy and camaraderie between the course members and the sense that we, collectively,   were part of something larger. The student bar was wicked too.

What advice would you give somebody who is considering studying at Northumbria?

Both the University and city are great, so if you go make sure you throw yourself into the experience.

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in three words?

Absolutely no regrets.

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