Ellen Bowley



United Kingdom
Having the freedom to twist briefs into something I could use to my advantage when trying to secure a placement was extremely valuable.

More about Ellen

Placement company: Lego (Denmark)

What do you enjoy most about your course at NTU?

“My experience of the BA (Hons) Product Design course at NTU has been fantastic so far. When talking to fellow students from other universities it becomes apparent that we are given a lot of freedom in our projects, we are able to explore areas of design that interest us and use various mediums to present the work. The emphasis on the importance of a year designing in industry is something that is unique to only a few universities, Nottingham Trent being one.

“I love the variety of projects we undertook in the second year. Having the freedom to twist the briefs into something I could use to my advantage when trying to secure a placement was extremely valuable. The opportunity to work in groups, in twos and independently was also very beneficial, when going into placement year. I also really enjoyed the workshop time, something I will really utilise in my final year.

How did you spend your placement year?

“I completed a twelve-month internship working as a model designer at LEGO in Denmark. I had the awesome job of designing, building and refining LEGO models at different price points for the 2017 LEGO Friends portfolio. I also had the opportunity to be part of research and concept work for various teams.

“The job was amazing, I had the freedom to design in a completely unique way, with access to the whole LEGO element library. I was set new challenges every day and treated as a junior designer. I was fortunate to be able to extend my internship to a year, and subsequently entrusted with designing two sets for the 2017 LEGO Friends portfolio, meaning I will have products on the shelf before I graduate!

“Working alongside other designers, all with hugely different backgrounds, was very inspiring. I worked in a friends studio on weekends, helping with her lighting and furniture design work, even travelling to Poland to collect a piece for a show in Bulgaria. Living in Denmark was an awesome experience - I had the time and money to be able to travel all over Europe on the weekends and holidays - and I wouldn’t hesitate to move back there.”

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