MOYA – Minds of Young Artists – is a production company created and driven entirely by design students from West College Scotland Paisley Campus. This revolutionary concept aims at promoting and selling the students’ artwork and is supported by Paisley 2021.

MOYA has now provided a solid foundation for the students to put their artwork into circulation and to generate revenue for themselves. In fact, they have already designed and created original artwork for five local businesses. The students have therefore achieved the full circle: providing a means of implementing their learning, setting up business and earning money.

This outstanding achievement was recently recognised at the 2017 SPARQS Student Engagement Awards. SPARQS – the Student Partnerships in Quality Scotland – is a publicly-funded agency for Scotland’s university and college sectors which aims to support student engagement in the quality of the learning experience.

The 2017 SPARQS awards ceremony was held in Edinburgh at the end of March. MOYA was part of the shortlisted projects in the awards category ‘A co-curricular initiative/project which has had an impact across the college or university’. Our students were up against other groups from well-respected universities, such as St Andrew’s, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

MOYA won first runner up and West College Scotland students were extremely pleased with the recognition. Murron Stoddart, HNC Graphic Design student and member of MOYA, said “I can’t express how honoured were to have been a part of the SPARQS awards, it really means a lot when our work as students gets recognised and rewarded, and we are so grateful.”

West College Scotland Design Lecturer Deborah Dennett was very proud of what her students have achieved. She said: “We are delighted that our students are designing, producing and selling their products through the MOYA brand. It enables them to implement their learning while at the same time grow their entrepreneurship skills and gain invaluable work experience.”

Last week, West College Scotland students running MOYA have also attended ‘Get Inspired 2017’ – Bridge 2 Business’ annual end-of the year event for West Scotland. The event, held at the Citizen M hotel in Glasgow, was an opportunity to promote and recognise student entrepreneurship across the West Region. Showcased at the event, MOYA was awarded ‘Best new business enterprise’ through public vote. The students were delighted to earn this popular recognition of their work. The event also gave them yet another opportunity to promote and market their work at a merchandise stand presenting a range of their products, such as T-shirts, framed artwork, tote bags and prints.

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