Sheffield’s variety makes it the best place for creatives to flourish
In celebration of International Women’s Day on 8 March, we are sharing the experiences of Sheffield women in businesses all week. Follow @Creativesheff to learn more.
First up is Pam Bowman, principal lecturer and program lead for visual communication at Sheffield Hallam University.
As well as her outstanding work in progressing Sheffield’s creative credentials, she also works to enhance the city’s reputation as a place to do business via the Conference Sheffield Ambassador programme.
As an ambassador, Pam is one of the city’s most influential individuals, helping to recommend Sheffield as a preferred location for conferences and events.
What were your early ambitions?
Various, including vet and physiotherapist. Then I finally settled on something more creative and studied graphic arts and design.
What advice would you give to your 14-year-old self?
Just do what you love and stop worrying about what anyone else thinks.
Why have you chosen to do business in South Yorkshire?
In Sheffield we are surrounded with interesting creative people in all sorts of fields. There is enormous and varied expertise and, from a design industry point of view, it gives Dust, the studio I work with, access to skills and methods not available elsewhere. From an educational point of view, it opens our students, in the Institute of Arts, to a broad understanding of what they can become in the creative industries, where careers are wide and varied and there is genuinely the opportunity to invent your own career path.
What is the most challenging thing about your job and/or other professional activities and what is the most rewarding?
The challenge is finding time to do all the things I want to do and get excited about. The reward is seeing projects out in the real world and helping our students find their place and succeed in what they want to do. I'm aware of how soppy that sounds but it is true.
Has there been a pivotal moment in your career that propelled it forward more than any other?
Actually, I think it’s been fairly smooth. But being in a position to make links between education and industry, the world seems to have become much smaller over the past few years. I guess my role is very outward facing and has allowed me to make contacts and bring people with interesting ideas into the city. Having them speak to our students and professionals in our lecture programme 'Curated by...' has been influential.
You can get free and impartial advice to help you set up or locate your business here in Sheffield. Contact Business Sheffield on 0800 043 5522 to learn more.