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It opened up many more avenues for me to express my creativity

"A truly amazing experience" is how third-year BSc Creative Computing student, Wesley Koh, describes the Goldsmiths Summer School.

Written by Wesley Koh |

Wesley pictured with Goldsmiths assistants
"These lessons were a real eye opener for me and allowed me to understand the industry in a better light."

When offered the opportunity to visit one of the most artistic and culturally rich cities in the world and to be taught highly niche creative skills, who could give up the chance? This opportunity was presented to me during my second year as a Creative Computing undergraduate in the form of the Goldsmiths Creative Computing Summer School. Without hesitation, my friend and I sent in our applications. The £1,000 subsidy for the course fees was the cherry on top.

We learned how to connect the physical world with the computing environment. We were taught to use small circuit-board like devices called Arduinos to light up LED lights and activate speakers using code, or to trigger Processing sketches with the help of various sensors. One of the more interesting parts of the course was when we made game controllers and artefacts from just yarn, conductive thread and sewing equipment. It was amazing!

The second half of the course focused more on graphics and animation. After a small refresher on how to use Processing, we were introduced to more advanced topics such as projection mapping, data analysis and representation, as well as game design. Since I have a very strong interest in games and understand the mechanics behind them, these lessons were a real eye opener for me and allowed me to understand the industry in a better light.

Throughout the four-week Summer School, we were highly encouraged to be creative and to think outside the box

Throughout the four-week Summer School, we were highly encouraged to be creative and to think outside the box. Rarely were we given limitations in what we could create, and I believe this really fuelled our creativity and we expressed ourselves freely.

The teaching staff were very approachable and highly knowledgeable in their field of expertise. They were able to impart a hefty amount of skills in the short time while keeping their lessons fun and interactive. I am grateful to Jesse Wolpert, the summer school manager, and her team of teaching assistants. They were very accommodating and their hospitality was exceptional. They went out of their way to ensure that we felt at home.

Wesley Koh and friends pictured outside the British Museum
"The teaching staff were able to impart a hefty amount of skills in the short time while keeping their lessons fun and interactive."

The class was primarily made up of students from Hong Kong, four SIM students and a handful of Europeans from France, Switzerland, etc. This diverse demographic and culture expanded our creativity and exposed us to different perspectives.

The accommodation provided was fantastic for its facilities and location. It was a stone’s throw from the campus and allowed for convenient travelling to the many tourist attractions and hotspots. Meals were never a problem thanks to the many eateries and supermarkets nearby.

We had plenty of free time to explore London. Apart from the school-planned day trips to neighbouring cities such as Cambridge and Brighton, my friends and I visited some of the many museums and famous landmarks. Touring the city was a real eye opener and the most enjoyable part of the trip. The highlight for me were the various theatrical plays Goldsmiths had arranged for us. 

Learning how to bridge the gap between the 2D and 3D world really allowed me to expand my creative abilities

The Summer School was a truly amazing experience. My favourite part of the curriculum was easily the physical computing aspect. Learning how to bridge the gap between the 2D and 3D world really allowed me to expand my creative abilities. It opened up many more avenues for me to express my creativity. I would never have been exposed to these advanced skills in my undergraduate curriculum if I had not participated in the Summer School at Goldsmiths. Also, to experience a wholly different culture from the one we are familiar with at home has allowed me to grow and mature as a person.

I would highly recommend this course to all computing students looking for ways to express their creative self. My one and only gripe with the course was that it was too short!