Creativity and Innovation inspires entrepreneurs at UWTSD


“Widely recognised as one of the world’s foremost institutions in creativity-led entrepreneurship education… (UWTSD’s) publications have been leading international discussions.” Yves Punie, EU Joint Research Centre, Seville.

Nia Rist - smiling with camera

Creativity and innovation are at the heart of University of Wales Trinity Saint David’s (UWTSD) mission to enhance graduate employability and the number of graduate start-ups. Our aim is to utilise our collective skills, knowledge and technology to enable the University and its graduates to offer solutions to the most urgent societal challenges – in Wales and further afield. Our vision has a strong commitment to building a sustainable society driven by innovation and entrepreneurship.

Innovative learning and industry collaboration is a key focus at the University, creating more opportunities for students to enhance their prospects after graduation. This unique approach of bringing students, academics and businesses together enables them to explore ideas and create opportunities for the development of new sustainable businesses, products and services.

Kath Penaluna, Associate Professor in Enterprise Education said: “It’s great to be recognised around the World for what we do, and even the United Nations chose us as their place to learn about becoming entrepreneurial. We specialise in helping teach entrepreneurship to teachers, and that’s international too. Creativity and innovation are at the core of UWTSD’s mission to transform, shape and develop futures and it all relies on the ability to see new ways forward. Our graduate entrepreneurs help inspire others by sharing their inspirational journeys, insights and expertise. We are proud to say that we have some of the highest number of active start-ups in the UK.”

With partners including Welsh Government and Big Ideas Wales, UWTSD offers a huge range of opportunities, including:

  • One-to-One Meetings
  • Creative Bubble support for student-led activities with a pop-up shop for exhibitions, performances, fundraising, networking and meetings
  • Meetings with like-minded students, alumni and entrepreneurs
  • Industry Links - projects, inspirational guest speakers and networking
  • Intellectual Property and Creativity Workshops
  • Enterprise Week events - held annually in November
  • Institutional and Welsh Government funded support

Since graduating from UWTSD’s Swansea College of Art Surface Pattern Design degree programme in 2016, Nia Rist has steadily developed her own screen-printed interior product range which she launched to an international audience at New Designers in London. And having been selected to exhibit as part of the Design Fresh breakthrough talent group, curated by 100% Design and Barbara Chandler, there’s no stopping her now!

Nia said: “Right from the start of the course, we were encouraged to have a go at everything, so we could truly find our passion. With constant feedback and encouragement, it was easy to experiment and most importantly, dare to be creative and succeed. I have learnt so much about myself, most importantly how crucial it is to forward plan and take advice from experts, who know most about the business world. The help and support I have received and continue to receive from my lecturers at UWTSD, even though I have now graduated, has been invaluable. They are with me every step of the way.”

Surface Pattern Design Programme Director Georgia McKie said: “The Surface Pattern programme instils a ‘can do’ attitude in our students – it is a wonderful experience for our team to watch these students journey from Freshers’ to Design Professionals.  We get an immense sense of pride from the work our graduates go on to achieve.  Putting creativity and employability on an equal footing, and at the heart of our programme is really paying off for our students. With Freshers’ 2019 now underway, we wonder what this next cohort of first years will go on to pursue once they graduate from Surface Pattern Design.”

Kathryn Penaluna added: “Nia is a great example of our enterprising students, she challenges and questions the norms and always looks for new ways forward. Her imagination helps her to see the kinds of opportunities that others would miss, which is one reason that I love working with her – I learn so much too!”

For more information:

Or why not chat to Kathryn Penaluna our Enterprise Manager to learn how we do it?



Further Information

Rebecca Davies

Swyddog Gweithredol Cysylltiadau â’r Wasg a’r Cyfryngau

Executive Press and Media Relations Officer

Cyfathrebu Corfforaethol a Chysylltiadau Cyhoeddus

Corporate Communications and PR

Mobile: 07384 467071