ICE and graduate mentoring for creatives

I have just been accepted onto the Graduate Mentoring Programme at the the Institute for Creative Enterprise in Coventry.

The Institute, more commonly known as ICE, is owned and run by Coventry University.  It offers hotdesking, networking opportunities, meeting rooms, a post box and lots of advice and mentoring to local creatives.

This is great for me, as I’m not short on ideas but I could definitely do with help on running a business.

After a chat with Jenna Hubbard, ICE’s Project Assistant, I had a really good chance to define what our theatre company does, and how I envision our creative future.  This is a real turning point for me.  Our theatre company is just about to undergo a massive change as Jan, the Artistic Director and founder, moves to Denmark.  I am just about to undergo a massive change myself: in October I start an MA in Creative Thinking.  I need business advice to carry the company forwards, and possibly starting a new company which will specialise in improving creativity in businesses and schools.

I was accepted onto the programme and immediately opportunities started flying my way.

ICE are brokering an internship scheme with The Future Works.  This means we as a theatre company can offer a graduate an internship. It also means I can become an intern, perhaps in an area I’d like to learn more about. Perhaps for a company that specialises in creative thinking…

I am alos given my own access card, which means I can come and work art a computer here at ICE 24/7.  All the hotdesking spaces have massive 20inch Macs with both Windows and OSX.  They all come with the full Adobe Creative Suite and I can come and work away here all day and all night, if I wish. Each desk has a phone, and each computer is hooked up to a printer, so I can work here at virtually no cost to myself, with no distractions.

There’s also two kitchens, plenty of meeting spaces and toilets with showers – so if I want to cycle down and get freshened up for my business meeting, I can.

I already have a session booked in with Jenna to look at scheduling, and in September ICE will put me onto a training scheme.  Here I will get free business training, business tools and a chance to design the future of my own creative business.

Not only that, but ICE is a hub.  I can find out what’s going on in the area creatively.  I can meet other people who are working in Coventry as creatives. I can find opportunities and events more quickly, and more importantly, build relationships.

So far, so good!  It’s all about the ICE, ICE baby.