Studying Graphic Design at Wrexham University and its instrumental impact on my career success

I embarked on my journey at Wrexham University back in 2018, when I decided to pursue a degree in graphic design. I’m currently employed as a fire fighter in Wrexham and studied full-time alongside working full-time. I decided to come to university after completing a couple of online design courses which sparked my interest in the graphic design field. I felt that I needed face-to-face help to learn design properly with the end goal of either changing careers from the fire service to design or starting my own agency up whilst remaining in the fire service.


I thoroughly enjoyed my time studying at Wrexham University. Being a father to three young children (now four) at the same time as working full-time and pursuing my degree in graphic design full-time was challenging but rewarding. If I’m honest, I cannot fault any aspect of the course that I studied. One of my favourite things about my course at Wrexham University was the small class sizes, which allowed me to get to know my peers, and meant that we had plenty of time with the lecturers, which you wouldn’t typically get in other universities.


The lecturers on my course were also incredibly supportive. Lisa Kennedy was brilliant, and still is – she is always there to provide advice and mentoring whenever I ask, even after finishing my studies! The same applies with David Merrilees-Kelly: he was always supportive and honest with his opinions of my work, providing me with extensive feedback as to any improvements or changes that should be made. A huge thank you to the incredible professors at Wrexham University.


I feel as though the course has been instrumental in my career progression. Upon graduating, I chose to hire one of the shed spaces offered to Wrexham University’s graduates. This space has been brilliant and has allowed me to get started with my business: C.G Creative. C.G Creative helps small to large businesses with their branding, web, and/or print needs as well as helping companies with their social media strategies. From content to design, my services are varied and I’m thoroughly enjoying it all.


Close-up example of a shed space


My future is looking bright at present. I’m currently working with two well-established agencies in different fields. I am supporting the first agency, ‘Let’s Grow’, by helping them with branding and web designs. Most recently, I have worked with Under Armour to build one of their sub domain websites to store all their social media assets and files. The other agency I am working with is Salisbury Media, who I help with branding and sports designs. We have a very exciting project coming up which I can’t discuss yet, but it involves a lot of professional footballers from the premier league to national, and the women’s Super League too.


Overall, I would certainly recommend Wrexham University to others that are thinking of pursuing their passions. The University was great for me and was flexible, which allowed me to continue working whilst studying. My biggest piece of advice to students would be to say yes to every opportunity that awaits you, even if you don’t think that you can do it, or it wouldn’t be something that you would normally do. You will always learn from new experiences, whether they go the way that you expect them to, or don’t. Furthermore, don’t hold back! Experiment as much as you can with your work. Make mistakes and learn from them. Keep improving and set yourself goals. Oh, and don’t leave your work until the last week or day before the due date!


- Written by Craig Garside, Owner of C.G Creative


To see some of Craig’s incredible work, check out C.G Creative on Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn.


If Craig’s story has inspired you to pursue your passion for design, check out the art and design courses we offer here at Wrexham University, or attend one of our upcoming open days!