Feature: Pursue your passion at Asia's leading contemporary arts and design institution


This article was first published in BrightMinds Magazine 2020. Republished with permission from CareerBuilder Singapore.

With a wide range of programmes in a world-class campus, LASALLE College of the Arts offers an unparalleled arts education designed to nurture industry-ready creative professionals.

If you have the flair and passion for the arts, LASALLE College of the Arts will bring out the best of your creative talent. It offers 30 contemporary arts and design programmes taught by a faculty of award-winning artists, designers, educators and researchers. 

In this BrightMinds story, we cast the spotlight on two LASALLE graduates pursuing their dreams while starting from very different places. Chew Yun Yan recently graduated with a BA(Hons) Film degree and holds a full-time job as head of design for a marketing agency. Jack Kenneth Tan graduated with a BA(Hons) Arts Management degree and is looking to contribute and shape the future of the arts scene in Singapore and beyond.

They tell us how the College has helped them to achieve their aspirations and carve out careers in the creative industries.

Yun Yan, how did your interest in filmmaking begin?

Yun Yan: After completing a design diploma at a local polytechnic, I wanted to acquire skills and knowledge in another field. So I took a gap year to ponder on what I truly wanted to do. During that time, I tried out internships, freelance work and passion projects which enabled me to put into perspective my creative priorities. Since young, I’ve always been amazed at how films impacted my imagination and storytelling. This eventually spurred me to pursue my interest in filmmaking at LASALLE.

Jack, you’re into arts management. How did your passion and interest come about?

Jack: I was never good in art, but when I pursued my diploma in product design at a polytechnic, my interest in the arts and design grew. Along the way, I learnt about the important role that arts management plays in the creative industries. This led me to study for an arts management degree at LASALLE where I hoped to acquire the needed understanding and sensitivities of the arts to better guide my future self and manage other artists and designers whom I have to work with.

Out of all the universities offering arts programmes, why did you choose LASALLE College of the Arts?

Yun Yan: LASALLE offers a hands-on and practice-led curriculum which really appealed to me. I was also drawn to its contemporary arts education and the interdisciplinary collaboration that would allow me to broaden my perspectives.  

Jack: When I was researching universities offering arts management programmes, I was drawn to LASALLE’s subject expertise, comprehensive curriculum and interdisciplinary approach such as managing campus performance events as well as industry partnerships like ARTWALK Little India.

What’s the culture like at LASALLE and how has studying there developed you as a person?

Yun Yan: The culture at LASALLE encourages highly independent and self-directed learning. You have to juggle multiple projects at any one time and make creative decisions while figuring out who to work with. Lecturers are on hand for consultation, but it’s really up to you to make the final decision. It’s hectic, but that really drives you to adapt quickly and prioritise what matters most. It really taught me how to collaborate with others and value different ideas and opinions.

Jack: I would describe the culture at LASALLE as supportive and nurturing. Every student is encouraged to pursue what they want and who they want to be. This has allowed me to gain self-realisation and grow personally.

What did you achieve during your time at LASALLE?

Yun Yan: I had fun with the entire creative process and that really cemented my positive experience at LASALLE. During my journey there, I gained new friends who also became my creative collaborators. But most of all, I made films that are entertaining and meaningful.

Jack: The three years I spent at LASALLE has definitely imparted me with the knowledge and skills I need to better manage the realities and challenges of working in the arts and creative industries.

What are your personal goals for the future?

Yun Yan: I would love to continue creating stories and contribute to the local film scene. I am currently working for a marketing agency as the head of design and in time, I hope to join a global network organisation and develop scripts for TV.

Jack: Beyond the presentation of art work, I believe it is important to understand the processes and rationale behind the art. Hence I hope that my career will contribute to increasing the public’s acceptance of the significance of art.

What advice do you have for those considering an education at LASALLE?  

Yun Yan: LASALLE really prepares you to adapt quickly and learn more about yourself. Don’t be afraid to try new things and meet new people. Understand your teammates’ vision before developing your own. Instead of focusing on limitations, pay attention to communications. Be open to criticism but don’t let it affect you personally. Most of all, have fun and take a leap of faith!

Jack: Embarking on a tertiary education is an important milestone in life. As someone once said ‘you’ll never know what you like, but you’ll know what you don’t like’, so consider carefully what you really want to do. If you are interested in the arts, head down to LASALLE’s Open House every January to talk to its students and faculty to gain a better sense of what studying there is really like.

Apply now for our undergraduate programmes.