A creative head start at Gateshead College

 31 May 2016

How can you give students a head start in the creative industries? Students at Gateshead College – a National Skills Academy Leadership College – are finding out through opportunities that put them at the heart of this thriving sector.

Part of my role is to connect people working in the sector who can provide real industry insights.
Part of my role is to connect people working in the sector who can provide real industry insights.

Getting stuck in at music festivals

As summer arrives, festival season is among us. For lucky students at Gateshead College, this means having the fabulous opportunity to find out what it’s like working in artist liaison roles at a number of large, high-profile festivals, such as Leeds and Glastonbury.

At Leeds, students will work across all stages, gaining valuable work experience and insights over the full weekend.

Longstanding partnerships like these are what make the National Skills Academy special.

At Glastonbury, one lucky student will spend half a day at The Pyramid Stage viewing gallery, where they will find out about how the stage is operated and spend time with the festival crew to learn all about their roles.

These wonderful opportunities have been developed though Steve Cheney, the Music Industry Liaison Officer for the National Skills Academy for Creative & Cultural. Steve has worked in the music industry for over 25 years and is Stage Manager for the main stages at Glastonbury, Latitude, Big Chill and Leeds.

Longstanding partnerships like these are what make the National Skills Academy special, and open up the students in our network to real jobs in the booming creative sector.

For those who can’t make festivals, we make sure that there are other chances for them. Students have had the opportunity to go to production day visits, which have included get-ins with the likes of The Script and The Prodigy at local music venues.

Gateshead College is also working with BBC Introducing, recording audio with bands such as Warning, which is then broadcast on BBC Radio.

Opportunities for industry insights

Gateshead College strives to ensure that their students are work-ready with the unique combination of high-quality education and real world skills.

As Skills Academy Manager for the North East, part of my role is to connect people working in the sector on both a regional and national basis who can provide real industry insights.

This includes linking them up with brilliant creative local organisations from across the board, such as:

Gateshead College strives to ensure that their students are work-ready.

  • e-3 design
  • UK Music
  • BECTU
  • Tyne and Wear Archive and Museums.

In the next few weeks, Catherine Hearne, Chief Executive of North East-based participatory arts organisation Helix Arts, will give a talk to students about exactly what participatory arts is, as well as the opportunities that may be available.

So with industry insights, production days, live briefs and talks, Gateshead College students are getting a head start in the creative industries, learning about the kinds of employers out there and the real life jobs to work towards.

Gateshead College is our Leadership College of the Month for June 2016. Find out more about the role of our Leadership Colleges


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