Working for yourself


At Goldsmiths we promote creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.

Whether you want to work for yourself, set up your own company or redefine your industry, we can support you every step of the way. From researching business ideas to looking for funding, the Careers Service at Goldsmiths offers one-to-one sessions to help you achieve your dreams.

Different ways to work for yourself

There are a number of different ways of working for yourself. These include:

Setting yourself up as self-employed/freelancing

Working as freelance or self-employed means that you will usually be undertaking fixed contract or project based work. This is a particularly common way of working in the creative industries, and offers the freedom of being your own boss. The offer extensive advice on how to set up as self-employed and work for yourself.

Setting up a business

There are three main ways to set up your own business. These depend on what you want to achieve, how you’d like to work, and what resources you have available:

  • Sole trader
  • Ltd companies
  • Partnerships

Visit for further information and to choose which option is right for you.

Planning and funding your business

Writing a detailed business plan can be the key to getting access to the funding you need to start a successful business. Careers Service at Goldsmiths offers one-to-one advice on how to complete a business plan and the best ways to fund your new business.

You can also check the Princes Trust and for additional support on how to write a business plan and apply for funding.

How Goldsmiths can help

Careers Service

The Careers Service offers dedicated advice to students planning to set up their own business or project. This includes one-to-one sessions where you can:

  • Refine and research your ideas
  • Take the first steps to turn your ideas into reality
  • Look for funding
  • Market your product or service
  • Advice on business plans and competition applications

Find out more about what the Careers Service can offer you.

Gold Ventures

Set up by current students, Gold Ventures is a society that aims to help students take projects and business ideas to the next level. Hosting events, guest speakers and workshops throughout the year, you can work with students from across the university to develop your ideas.

Find out more about Gold Ventures on Facebook.

Cecilie Dreyer

Photo of Cecilie Dreyer
"The practical focus of the music pathway course pushed me to take my new understanding and form it into a real-life project."

"I started at Goldsmiths after completing a BSc degree of Economics and Business Administration, during which I had obtained work experience in the music business in Copenhagen and Los Angeles. During my studies at Goldsmiths I was working at Kartel Music Group focusing on business development analysis and the development of non-financial KPIs to measure performance of their service clients.

My studies at Goldsmiths led me to see the music business in a new way. The MA Arts Admin course introduced me to various business models in the wider creative industries, which mainly provided me with a new understanding of how to foster and grow artistic talent, especially in the music industry, in the most cost-effective way. The practical focus of the music pathway course pushed me to take my new understanding and form it into a real-life project, thus, Banders was founded.

Banders is a new start-up aiming to empower the generation of do-it-OURselves creators. The mission is to facilitate relationships in the wider creator-sphere, through technology that employs creative passion for music. The team currently consists of 6 members located in San Francisco, Los Angeles and London. The platform will launch mid-2017. I am currently the director of the company on a full-time basis."

Gruff Theatre

Photo of Gruff Theatre
"Our time at Goldsmiths gave us a place where we were encouraged to understand and break rules and, most importantly, take risks."

Tom Bostock, Holly Shuttleworth, Alistair Foylan and Phoebe Naughton met while completing their BA in Drama and Theatre Arts. They were placed together by their teacher, Cass Fleming, who they said nurtured their transition from four performers into a collective of theatre makers.

They enjoyed working together so much that they formed Gruff Theatre after graduation. "We all had very different interests, but a shared desire to explore the relationship between site and experience glued us together."

As well as staging site-specific performances, Gruff now offers workshops to others, and has worked with RIFT, Ideastrap and the Brit School. The group has performed in such diverse settings as an East End tower block and a Victorian cemetery. 


Photo of squareglass
"There's something quite communal about the Goldsmiths experience."

Guy, Robin and Aviram met studying BMus Popular Music and set up record label and music collective squareglass. 

"Each one of our solo projects evolved as part of and during our studies at Goldsmiths. Establishing squareglass was quite an organic move - something we felt would empower us creatively and practically, and would enable us to further establish our careers as individual artists."

Around the time they finished their studies the three artists began playing in eachother's live bands, which taught them about the dynamics of working together as a group.

"There's something quite communal about the Goldsmiths experience. You get to know and work with people from different backgrounds and you become part of a small community that feels like a home-away-from-home. For us it was a very immersive experience...studying and living in South-East London"

All three have released their own music on squareglass, plus work by others and compilations. They also put on events, looking for original ways to translate recorded music into live shows.