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Samsung: unlocking students’ creative potential, Silicone Valley-style  

Tech giant Samsung South Africa's recent collaboration with Vega School proved to be a worthwhile exercise for hundreds of creative college students looking for hands-on, real-world experience.

Vega School, a brand of the Independent Institute of Education (The II), is slowly becoming a go to place for future innovators and inventors looking to awaken their creative and innovative side.

However, for many students it’s one thing to gain acceptance into prestigious learning institutions of their choice, and quite another to get to experience a truly experiential educational experience that allows them engage with experts from the world’s most innovative companies.

To make this a reality, Samsung SA collaborated with the award winning tertiary brand – ranked the ‘Top Educational Institution‘ across the Middle-East Africa by industry authority, the Loeries Official Rankings – in one of a kind ‘Design Jam’ competition.

The aim was to give young South African designers the opportunity to showcase their design skills on a global stage, while allowing them to get first-hand experience of Silicon Valley innovation ecosystem.

To this end, over 400 students across Vega’s 4 campuses in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, and Durban were invited to co-create content across disciplines that would be used as Samsung Galaxy themes and be loaded onto the Galaxy Store. 

Design Jam: the winning themes will be available on all Samsung devices

Disruptive innovation

The teams comprising of second year students studying graphic design, copywriting, and digital design students were tasked with applying disruptive design-thinking approaches to come up with a full theme consisting of wallpapers, icons and Always On displays. 

They were given an open ended brief, with the theme “local is lekker”, which they needed to apply over a variety of categories: sports, cars, lifestyle, nature, monuments and also illustrative designs.

True to form, the exercise turned out to be a natural fit for both the 3 remaining competing teams and the rest of the students, as it benefited their overall understanding of interactive methods involved in the creation of innovative solutions.

“Samsung continuously supports South African artists, and we believe that the country is rich in natural talent and look forward to promoting the work of these creative problem solvers and mavericks,” Samsung SA chief marketing officer, Cambridge Mokanyane said. 

He added: “Their skills echo our own pursuit of excellence – design that brings the world to life in innovative ways.

  • The winner – whose themes would go on to feature on the Galaxy Store – will be announced on Friday, December 20, 2019.
Tankiso Komane
Tankiso Komane
A Tshwane University of Technology journalism graduate, Tankiso Komane has a vast experience in print & broadcast media business and has worked for some of the country’s biggest daily newspapers, including The Sowetan, The Citizen, The Times, and The New Age. Through her varied work as a journalist, notably as a copywriter for SABC1 (On-Air promotions) and as a publicist for Onyx Communications, she has developed an in-depth understanding of the nature of the media business and how to use it for the purpose of exposure. Her expertise in journalism across various disciplines, coupled with a good reputation, has laid the foundation of a new kind "trust in Journalism" as the media ecosystem continues to digitally evolve.
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