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Royal College of Art Announces Long-Term Partnership with Burberry Creating a Multi-Discipline Design Scholarship

14 February 2012 – The Royal College of Art is pleased to announce the Burberry Design Scholarship – a new partnership between the Royal College of Art and British global luxury brand Burberry that will benefit art and design students over a 10-year period.

Christopher Bailey
Christopher Bailey

The scholarship aims to nurture and support creative talent in the UK and will provide a new funding stream for design and art students at the Royal College of Art. In addition to funding, scholars will receive an iPad to aid their studies and will have the opportunity to undertake a two-week work placement at Burberry.

The Burberry Design Scholarship will benefit students across a number of art and design disciplines including: Architecture, Design Interactions, Fashion, Innovation Design Engineering, Photography, Textiles and Visual Communication.

Christopher Bailey, who graduated from the Royal College of Art in 1994, has a long-standing relationship with the College. He was himself able to take up the opportunity to study at the RCA after receiving a scholarship from a fund set up by the family of the late designer Bill Gibb. In 2003 Bailey received an Honorary Fellowship from the RCA and most recently was guest speaker at the College’s Innovation Night in June 2011.

The announcement of the Burberry Design Scholarship marks anniversaries for both the Royal College of Art (175 years) and Christopher Bailey (10 years at Burberry). Both organisations regularly work together to nurture and support emerging creative talent.

Dr Paul Thompson, Rector of the Royal College of Art said:

“I am delighted that through the Burberry Design Scholarships, the Royal College of Art will continue to produce some of the most outstanding creative talent in partnership with one of Britain’s most successful and dynamic global companies. Christopher dedicates so much of his time to students and great causes and we are privileged to have his knowledge, insight and experience. Burberry is a highly successful company, driven by innovation; it provides the perfect source of inspiration for any design or art student.”

Christopher Bailey, Chief Creative Officer, Burberry said:

“I am thrilled and privileged to announce the Burberry Design Scholarship with the Royal College of Art. Burberry and the RCA have worked together on various projects over the years, with the aim of developing and supporting emerging British trained design talent and this is a natural evolution of that close partnership.

“I was incredibly fortunate to be awarded a scholarship to the RCA by the family of the late Bill Gibb and I can say without question I would not be where I am today had it not been for that support; thanks not only to the financial assistance which it gave me, but also to the mentoring and guidance that is so crucial at a stage of your life where every decision makes a huge impact on your future.

“It's for this reason that I feel so proud that we at Burberry are able to offer this opportunity to the creative talent of tomorrow, giving a new generation of designers the chance to benefit from the world-class expertise, facilities, teaching, experience and mentoring that this collaboration will bring.

“Burberry has become a diverse company, incorporating many different facets of design from fashion and textiles, to architecture, multimedia content and more. It is for this reason that we are so excited to be working more closely with the RCA, where the courses represent that depth and breadth and encourage students to look beyond the qualification to how they can apply their skills in a number of different ways.”