London College of Fashion
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Review of "London College of Fashion"
When I was in high school, the thought of University was really really far off. It had been built into this great thing, an opportunity for me to really develop to my full potential. I would meet a wide range of people, find my own niche perhaps and learn about all the things that my high school couldn't or wouldn't teach us. After a severe process of application through UCAS and exams and acceptances ( and rejections ofcourse ) I finally chose to go to the one school I applied to outside of UCAS : The London College of Fashion. I thought that it would give me everything that a conventional university wouldn't, so instead of going to Bristol or Durham which I probably should have, I made a somewhat " distinguished" choice, I guess you could say.The London College of Fashion is part of the London Institute ( which is comprised of 5 art schools ). It has 2 main grounds, Oxford Circus and Bond St., and 1 smaller one, just behind Selfridges on Barrett St. As I was on a course called Fashion Promotion that didn't require the use of full on studios, I spent most of my time at the Bond St one.
At first glance, the school looks rather quaint. The street has a subtle and understated character to it and if you didn't know that the large No. 65 denoted the school's location, you could have happily walked past without really knowing it was there. Once inside though, it's revealed for what it really is. the building doesn't really have a proper lobby, you go in past the security guards ( unless you have a card, you can't get in, which means any visiting parents, siblings, friends and lovers all have to sit outside on the pavement ) and go straight up the stairs ( we never really thought about taking the lift, as it took about 10 minutes to get to the 5th floor ). The corridors were really quite shabby, the rooms small and often not very facilitated. The cafeteria on the top floor was laughable for it's size and the lack of what is was really meant to be serving ie. food. There was a career centre on the first floor, which was more a career room, with nothing more than a counselour who could talk to you about what you "could" do with no real guidance. The international office was on the top floor, yet you couldn't go in unless by specific appointment which gave it an unfriendly air that departments like that really would be better off without. That really as about it.To be fair, as this wasn't the main building, maybe you couldn't expect it to have everything available to you, but you would expect that they would have had more than 3 computers with internet access to that size of a building. They didn't improve this situation till my third year.
ADMINISTRATION : This might give you an idea. During my three years at the college, I moved 3 times. After my first move, from halls to a private place, I never actually received any of the mail I was meant to. I inquired at the offices, and would only then be sent what I needed. Each time I moved, they lost my address. When I finally blew up at them, I started receiving not only my own, but another girl's mail who had a similair name to mine. Despite informing them of their mistake, to this day, I still get her mail. Suffice to say, I didnt get my original certificate nor did that girl receive her invitation to the graduation. I did.COURSE STRUCUTRE AND TEACHING : Chaotic to say the least. In my first year, I had 6 different computer teachers, and our teachers seemed to cancel on us continuously. It got to the point where we had to have crash courses to catch up on everything we missed. We were meant to have 20 hours of school a week. I think we sometimes only managed 6. I didn't actually learn anything until I was a year and a half into the course, so I could have saved my parents a lot of money.
SCHOOL SPIRIT/ACTIVITIES : We never met anyone outside of our course as there were no real societies or clubs at LCF. No sports, no nothing, only language support classes if we wanted them. In fact, it was difficult to socialise with anyone on our course as classes were fairly sporadic and there wasn't anywhere to socialise. It wasn't an especially nurturing environment and very difficult for me, as I was younger than a lot of people on the course.POST STUDY : I have had friends who wanted to contact our school office or the head of our course to get transcripts to either further their education or get a job. None of the staff contacted called back. And this is a course that proclaimed to keep in touch with all their graduates.
CONCLUSION : If I could do it again, I would never have come to the school. In the subjects I majored in, I was lucky to finally end up with a tutor who taught me well ( though, as I mentioned before, I had to go through the crash course thing before the tutor decided that we could continue on with the modules ) But in all the other things that the course was meant to teach us, it failed miserably. I didn't have that great opportunity to meet people the way so many of my friends have at other places and I never learnt to pick up any other interests through the school either. As a University experience, I would say that LCF is very poor and a waste of time. What bothered me most is that it never for one moment seemed at all apologetic that it did not live up to what it proposed to be. In fact, the entire attitude of the staff there ( save one or two ) can only be described as SMUG. Perhaps as a place where you take an extra course outside of what you're really doing, but otherwise, I would recommend going somewhere else.
Product Information : London College of Fashion
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Listed on Ciao since: 24/01/2001