Creative Academy

The Creative Academy is a series of bespoke sessions led by industry experts along with access to carefully selected seminars from the main festival agenda to enable students to build essential creative skills during a intensive three-day programme.

25 - 27 September 2019

Taking place during Spikes Asia, the Creative Academy is an exciting training course available to just 15 students from the Asia Pacific region. The three-day programme is a unique opportunity to learn from some of the most inspiring and experienced figures in the industry through exclusive seminar sessions and tutorials, all specially tailored to academy students.

For any enquiries about the Academy, please contact Ryhn Lee at

The Spikes Creative Academy is powered by Cheil.

Key Dates

01 April

Open for application

30 June

Applications close at 23:59, Singapore time

15 to 31 July

15 successful applicants selected by Cheil will be notified

Who is it for?

The course has been specially crafted to meet the needs of young creative students who have not yet been employed in the communications or advertising industry, but hope to embark on a creative career after graduation.

To qualify, participants must meet the following criteria:

• Aged 23 or under, born on or after 28 Sep 1995.
• Currently in tertiary education studying advertising, marketing and communications or related field
• Currently enrolled in an institution in Asia-Pacific OR is a citizen of an Asia-Pacific country
• Has not yet been employed in the communications or advertising industry
• Planning to pursue a creative career after graduation
• Have a strong command of the English language
• All applications and materials to be submitted to your local Rep by 30 June, 23:59 Singapore time.

Why take part?

A unique combination of classroom-based learning and practical coaching sees industry leaders passing on the tricks of the trade to students hoping to pursue a creative career after graduation.

Designed to help you reach your full potential, the Creative Academy is a unique combination of classroom-based learning and practical coaching. It concludes with a graduation ceremony celebrating participants’ achievements

Participants will also benefit from bespoke workshops, plus access to seminars from the main Festival programme and exhibitions of the most innovative and creative ideas from Asia Pacific and beyond.

Selected students will receive a Spikes Academy pass (worth SGD950), fully paid air tickets to Singapore and accommodation will be provided for the duration of the Festival.

The sponsor selects 15 outstanding creative students to participate each year. To apply for the Creative Academy, please download the application form, complete it and submit it along with the required materials to your local Festival Representative. If your country does not have a Festival Representative, please contact Ryhn Lee at

It was very insightful, the place is filled with passionate creatives and I loved the brainstorming session. This was my first academy and it really motivated me to want to do more.

Val Wai
Creative, Singapore

Key themes 2019

Here are just some examples of the learning that will take place at the Creative Academy in 2019.

State of Humanity

The state of the world and creativity in 2019

Social Media 2.0

Social Media has evolved rapidly in recent years. Here we consider its tremendous influence.

Creativity and Innovation

Why creativity and innovation are key to engaging with your audience.

How the brain works

Better understand your brain to make the most of its potential

Academy tutor



It all started with a hard-fought internship at then Singapore’s creative agency, Batey Ads in 1996 during his polytechnic days. And after spending a year in Melbourne completing his degree in Advertising, Azhar came back to land a job not in advertising, but in Singapore Airlines to travel the world, for free. Dusting his portfolio case a year later, he started his formal advertising career as an Art Director. A couple of years later, he helmed an integrated shop double-hatting as its Creative and Communications Director for its Singapore office. After close to a decade, he went on a full teaching career at the Singapore Polytechnic’s Design School.

Azhar was Senior Lecturer and Course Chair of the Diploma in Visual Communication and Media Design course there. Now an Education Advisor working on pedagogy research, Azhar founded The Student Agency (TSA), an in-house integrated agency with about 20 design students running and managing live projects while he was a teaching faculty. He expanded his teaching repertoire and led his students to participate at the London Design Festival, an industry mentorship with Droga5 in Sydney and also undertaking live briefs from clients such as Greenpeace in Hong Kong. Azhar maintains his industry relevance and practice this way, also with his after-six brand consultancy work for a string of clients now.

Azhar has served as Academy Tutor at the Cheil Worldwide’s Spikes Academy at Spikes Asia since 2009. He also featured at the Cannes Lion’s Young Lions Creative Academy supporting its Academy Dean, Bob Isherwood as Assistant Tutor in 2012 and 2013.

Creative Academy Speakers 2019  (more to follow)

  • Ronald Ng

    Global Chief Creative Officer


  • Shouvik Prasanna Mukherjee

    Executive Creative Director


  • Pipha Youngmin Cho

    Executive Creative Director

    Cheil Worldwide

  • Guan Hin Tay

    Founder/Global Chief Creative Officer

    TGH Collective

  • Rishabh Sharma

    Head of Brand Strategy

    Twitter India

  • Lee Owens

    Head of Brand Strategy

    Twitter Australia

  • Frederico Roberto

    EMEA Senior Creative Director


  • Emir Shafri

    Executive Creative Director


  • Nadya Kirillova

    Creative Director

    Dentsu Inc

  • Hidetoshi Kuranari

    Creative Director

    Dentsu Inc

  • Paul Falzon


    Paul Falzon And Associates Pte. Ltd

Seeing examples of amazing work and hearing from leaders of the industry made me feel more on the pulse of the advertising/creativity world and it has opened my mind to new ideas and concepts.

Sophia Davies
Creative, New Zealand

More training opportunities at Spikes Asia 2019

The Spikes Asia academy curriculum is essential learning for anyone wanting to accelerate their career.