BBC Academy launches Stephen Lawrence BBC Training Programme

Date: 03.03.2014     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 17.51
Category: Corporate
The BBC has joined forces with the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust to launch a three-month training programme for young people from BAME backgrounds.

The scheme, called the Stephen Lawrence BBC Training Programme, is co-funded by the Department of Business Innovation and Skills, and will be run in partnership with the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, Job Centre Plus, Westminster Kingsway College, and the BBC.

The scheme, which launches on 17 March, aims to train up to twenty-five 19-23 year olds from BAME backgrounds and to develop their skills so they can compete for paid work at entry level. The trainees will be non-graduates with no formal media work experience. However, they will demonstrate their passion and interest for television by offering evidence of creativity, for example, through blogging, YouTube, or photography.

The trainee programme will culminate in a BTEC Level 2 Certificate in Creative Media Production (QCF), which will include training in Maths and English. Trainees will study for six weeks at Westminster Kingsway College (covering four modules: research, the creative media sector, communication techniques and video production). In conjunction with this they will also get six weeks’ work experience at the BBC - on structured placements in BBC Television and at the BBC Academy. In general, the training will follow a typical television production journey, from the initial ideas stage to research, development, making the content and pitching.

Those who successfully complete the programme will get an automatic fast track to the final interview stage of a BBC apprenticeship and the aim is that, via an open and fair selection process, some of them will become Production apprentices in the BBC.

The BBC Academy is holding a selection day on 5 March where 60 potential applicants will be shortlisted down to 25 for a place on the scheme.

Baroness Lawrence of Clarendon OBE, said: “The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust is delighted to be a part of this programme. We are committed to giving young people greater access into the media profession and this partnership offers a fantastic opportunity for young people to develop their skills, learn from industry experts and bring them a step closer to fulfilling their career ambitions.”

Danny Cohen, Director, BBC Television, said: “The diversity of our work-force is a very big priority for me and it is brilliant to be working with the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust on this new training programme.”

Anne Morrison, Director, BBC Academy, said: “This Traineeship is a great way for the BBC to open up our entry level opportunities to diverse young people with high potential creative talent; giving them the skills and confidence to compete for a place on a BBC Apprenticeship.”

Andy Wilson, Principal at Westminster Kingsway College, said: “Westminster Kingsway College is pleased to be part of this unique partnership with such important organisations in the voluntary and public sectors. The Stephen Lawrence BBC Training Programme will provide opportunities for young people to realise their dreams.”

Notes to Editors

The BBC Academy is the BBC’s centre for training. It houses the Colleges of Journalism, Production, Leadership and Technology. As well as training our own staff, we also have a remit under the terms of the BBC's Charter Agreement to train the wider industry. We aim to share as much of our training as possible with the wider UK broadcasting industry for free. We also offer some of our courses on a commercial basis, both within the UK and abroad.

The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust is a national education charity which transforms the lives of young people and aims to achieve real social change by supporting young people to transform their lives, overcoming disadvantage and discrimination and into ambitious careers as professionals; ensuring business can benefit from and is more inclusive of diverse talent throughout its management structures and continuing to campaign for fairness and justice, ensuring the lessons from Stephen's murder are acted upon.

Westminster Kingsway College offers a wide range of full-time and part-time courses giving students the opportunity to gain vocational, professional and academic qualifications at different levels. The College is one of the largest colleges in central London with Centres in Camden and Westminster. It has about 15,000 students across all age ranges and offers 16-19 year old further education as well as a wide range of vocational, professional and academic courses for adults. The College has been working with the BBC Academy for a number of years to provide digital media training for apprentices through the London 2012 Apprenticeships scheme and developing further training schemes for young people.

Jobcentre Plus, part of the Department for Work and Pensions, helps people move from benefits into work and helps employers fill vacancies. It also deals with benefits for people who are unemployed or unable to work because of a health condition or disability.

Janie Ironside-Wood / Nick Henegan