D&AD Shift with Google, a free night school for those without a college qualification in design, opened applications for the 2021 New York program. The program creates an accessible space for self-taught, emerging creatives to hone their skills and help the industry access some of the best new talent.
This year's Shift program comes at a crucial moment as the next generation continues to face significant barriers to education and employment in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic alongside rising racial and gender pay gaps. In 2019, since completing the Shift program, 60% of alumni in New York and London have entered into paid creative employment.
Successful applicants will gain a place in the four-month night school running from October 2021 to March 2022 which will provide an opportunity to work on a diverse range of projects that reflect the latest trends and topics of the industry, brought together in a final showcase of creative work in March 2022.
For this year's New York program, D&AD has once again partnered with adidas to set one of the main creative briefs that will enable this year's New York cohort to develop their portfolios and creative style, giving Shifters direct access to the brand and its mentorship.
"It's time we look towards a fairer future for the creative industries," commented Paul Drake, Foundation Director at D&AD. "Creativity thrives from diverse minds and perspectives, and the only way this can be harnessed is by agencies and brands looking beyond those who have privileged access routes to get in. We all need to act on the belief that great creative talent does not only reside in a few universities or colleges. D&AD Shift with Google has consistently matched creative talent with professional opportunities over the past five years. With the continued support of our partners such as Google and adidas, the program is expanding and connecting a growing wave of self-made creative talent to the industry."
The deadline for applications is September 13, 2021.
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