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New partnership aims to plug broadcast industry skills gap

Written by
Anna Castleton
Published date
23 January 2014

University of the Arts London is partnering with leading music and entertainment company Global to create a new University Technical College focused on the digital broadcasting industry.

The new Global Academy will be created as part of a growing network of UTCs, which offer 14 to 18 year olds full-time, technically-oriented vocational education in colleges that are linked to both universities and industry.

Media students at LCC

Media students at LCC

The Academy is the first UTC to specialise in media and broadcasting, and will have a curriculum strongly focused on the technical skills needed to get a job in today’s industry. The partnership with UAL will be led by Natalie Brett, Head of London College of Communication, who says:

“At LCC we are immersed in all aspects of the media and communication industries, both through our industry partnerships and through our staff, students and alumni who are working in diverse roles across the sector. We know what it takes to build the foundations of a successful career, and we are home to the sort of excellent people and facilities that are guaranteed to inspire young people and get their imaginations racing.

“We’re really looking forward to working with Global not just on teaching and learning, but also on getting the Academy’s first cohort of students working with LCC staff and students. It’s very exciting to be part of something that will open up opportunities to so many young people.”

Students in LCC's broadcast media studio

Students in LCC’s broadcast media studio

According to Ashley Tabor, Global’s founder and executive president, the creation of the Global Academy was sparked by challenges in recruiting young people with the right skills for the industry. He says:

“Since founding Global, I’ve been struck by the shortage of young people coming into the industry with the right practical skills or broad enough skills. As emerging technologies continue to change the way we do business, that skills gap will only get bigger.

“With this new Global Academy, we want to lead the way in developing and nurturing talent and securing jobs for young people from all backgrounds. We will bring talented young people, some of whom wouldn’t otherwise get the chance to gain these skills, into the exciting digital broadcasting industry and help ensure the industry continues to thrive while simultaneously equipping these students with the real skills they need to succeed in today’s industry.”

The Global Academy will be funded by the Department for Education and subject to Ofsted inspection. It will offer GCSes, A levels, BTECs and the English Baccalaureate combined with specialist vocational training modules that lead to industry-recognised vocational qualifications.

UAL will play a major role in developing the Academy’s curriculum and approach to learning and teaching, and will provide a range of accredited qualifications through the University of the Arts London Awarding Body.

The Academy will open in London in September 2015. See the announcement from the Department for Education here.