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Bright Lights of Media City

Students marvel at the Match of the Day studio.

According to a recent government report, the creative industries in the UK could generate 600,000 new jobs by 2023. This was exciting news for Notre Dame’s Future Media students. To find out more about how they could secure a career in the media sector, our NCOP Media Champion took them to Media City and the University of Manchester.

Future Media is one of the programmes we offer to support students with their career aspirations and help them explore possible degree options. Thanks to NCOP, we have five Future programmes that our students can join, giving them access to subject talks, workshops, and many other activities. Also invited to join the trip on March 19 were students aspiring to create a college newspaper.

The first stop was Media City in Salford, where our students took a tour of the BBC. They visited the largest television studio in Europe, where programmes such as The Voice and Jerry Springer are filmed. In the Match of the Day studio, our students heard about the latest technological developments in the media, including augmented reality graphics and smart lighting. When they visited the Good Morning Britain set, three of our students relished the opportunity to give a weather report and present topical news items.

The next stop was the University of Manchester, for an introductory lecture in film studies and English literature. Our students also learnt about future careers in the media, particularly the recent shift towards a freelance model that requires staff to be skilled in a range of different areas. Afterwards, they went on a tour of the student media facilities at the University. This included a radio and television studio, and a newspaper production office. A resounding message from the visit was that a degree is just one requirement for being able to secure a media career. Building a portfolio of work is also vital for success. Universities such as Manchester offer a wealth of easily accessible extra-curricular opportunities so that students can develop this.

Student Amy Thackray commented, ‘At the BBC studios I learned loads about the way some of my favourite TV programmes are made and about jobs in the media sector. I didn’t think university was for me, but the tour of the University of Manchester showed me that there are so many incredible experiences on offer that can help my chances of working in the media industry.’