Creative students make their mark on the Centre for Student Life

Three undergraduates will see their artwork brought to life as large-scale vinyl installations when Cardiff University opens the doors to its new Centre for Student Life later this year.

The students submitted their designs to a competition launched in March to find original artwork for the new Park Place landmark due to open on 4 October 2021.

The winners, final year students Shreshth Goel, Lizzie Eves and Isaac Slater, designed their entries for specific spaces in the building, which will provide a home for the University’s Student Life services ready for the start of the 2021/22 academic year.

Shreshth, who is studying the LLB Law programme at the School of Law and Politics, will see his design featured behind the frontline Student Connect service on the ground floor of the building.

He explained: "I used the words of welcome in a number of international languages to represent the bilingualism and diversity of the University. And, the images of a daffodil, the national flower of Wales, represents new beginnings - something every student marks with their university life."

Isaac, a BSc Architecture student at the Welsh School of Architecture, chose to use pathways in his design, which will be displayed on the first floor, where students can engage with employers and careers advisers from the Student Futures Team.

He said: "Paths represent different choices in life, where they may lead you in your future and how perceived failures or dead ends can sometimes lead to success."

Lizzie, who is also studying the BSc Architecture programme, will see two of her designs on display in the Centre for Student Life, both on the fourth floor, where students will wait for appointments with support staff.

Her choice of a repeating pattern of terraced houses represents student housing in the Cathays and Roath areas.

She said: "These houses symbolise the connectedness and the homeliness of the city and emphasise that this building is now a focal point of the Cathays campus."

Lizzie’s second entry aims to create a calming environment in the waiting area for her fellow students.

She added: "Connection to nature has positive impacts for wellbeing and wellness, which is key for this space. The simple sketch of Welsh hills captures the need for looking after and caring for both ourselves and the natural world."

Professor Damian Walford Davies, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Cardiff University and Executive Sponsor for the Centre for Student Life, was a member of the panel judging the competition entries.

He said: "The Centre for Student Life will be a welcoming, supportive and dynamic space for all students when it opens later this year.

"It has been co-created with students from the start, and featuring our students’ artwork on the walls encapsulates our commitment to working with students to enhance their experience and the support services that the building will so effectively bring together.

"I was really impressed by the conceptual and technical strengths of all entries to the competition and it was a challenge to pick just four designs, which I’m looking forward to seeing in situ this autumn."