Today we are announcing the creation of a new Global Academy, a full University Technical College (UTC) that will create an educational environment to train young people for jobs in the digital broadcasting industry.
The Department for Education has given the go-ahead for this ground-breaking project, which will open in London in September 2015, and will be in partnership with the University of Arts London. Since 2008, we have offered a formal route to work experience and internships, and to date 450 work experience and internship placements have been secured. Individuals can apply through our website for positions at all our 21 broadcast centres.
The Global Academy, the digital broadcasting industry’s first University Technical College (UTC), builds on this work, and will provide education for 14-18 year olds studying GCSEs, A-Levels, BTECs and the English Baccalaureate. However, unlike traditional schools and sixth form colleges, the Global Academy will also provide specialist vocational training modules leading to specific qualifications in creative, technical and digital media as well as entrepreneurship. The curriculum will have a strong focus on the technical skills needed to get a job in today’s digital broadcasting industry.
Ashley Tabor, our founder & executive president here at Global, believes the shortage of young people with the right skills to work in the industry highlights a need for such a facility, the first of its kind.
“I wish there had been a school like this when I was studying,” he said. Tabor conceived and developed the new Global Academy over the past two years.
“Since founding Global,” he said, “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,” said Tabor.
Some students will go on to higher education and further education and apprenticeships, and others straight into jobs. By year two, the Global Academy will have roughly 800 students.
The Department for Education will fund the Global Academy, ensuring it is accessible to talented and driven students from all social and economic backgrounds. Global will lead the academy, creating a culture of entrepreneurialism and ensuring the correct modules are offered, as well as contributing resource and expertise from our teams to spend time with students.
Lord Baker, who came up with the idea of University Technical Colleges in 2007, said: “Today’s announcement shows continued support and commitment from the Government to increase the size and impact of the UTC movement. There will now be six UTCs. I am delighted that UTCs enjoy all-party support and that the Coalition continue to back them. I am very pleased to note that there will be a further application round later this year with a closing date of 9 May 2014 for UTCs to open in 2016.”
We will also draw on expertise from industry partners, including Universal Music Group, Decca Records, Independent Radio News, WCRS, PHD, RCS, Ooyala, Arqiva, Cisco, Clifford Chance, and Slaughter & May. Industry bodies, the Radio Advertising Bureau, the Radio Centre and the BPI, are also supporting the initiative in order to make the training relevant to a broad range of workplace environments.
Karen Blackett, CEO, MediaCom UK, said: “It’s inspiring to see Global take the lead in setting up a university technical college for the digital broadcasting industry. It’s critical that we equip the next generation with the skills needed to get jobs in the industry when they finish their education. The creation of the Global Academy chimes with our beliefs at MediaCom UK and we are keen to support the development of the curriculum, and offer work placements to students where possible.”
The suite of vocational specific qualification modules developed by Global and its partners will be accredited by University of the Arts London. The Global Academy will be subject to Ofsted inspection and will be part of the standard Department for Education league tables.