Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Did We Mend The Gap?

Julian Scott, Natalie Busuttil, Greg Wade, Kate O'Connor & Alex Williams
Last week we co-hosted an event with Film London titled "Mend the Gap" - an evening of discussion and debate around the current animation training and employment landscape.

Chaired by Film London’s Animation Consultant, Julian Scott, a panel of industry experts and university representatives came together to examine how academia and the animation industry might help solve the growing animation skills challenge.  So, did we manage to help Mend The Gap last week?

The problem
UK universities produce over 600 students annually with degrees in animation, yet the animation industry sources a significant section of its talent from abroad.

Industry complains that UK graduates aren’t ready for work and academia wants industry to be more proactive in helping to shape degree courses.

In the meantime, the risk of a hard Brexit and an end to free movement of labour poses a real threat to the UK's visual effects and animation industry

Mend the Gap at Escape Studios
Questions were raised by the audience such as: Are students wasting their money when they pay £9k per year for animation courses that don't teach practical skills? Can universities keep their courses relevant in an ever-evolving and dynamic industry? And should industry be more accepting of what universities can really deliver and play a bigger part in new entrants’ development?

While it was recognised by some that university isn’t necessarily a passport to a job – it provides so much more than that – it was also acknowledged that much more needs to be done to equip UK graduates with the skills required to compete with their international counterparts.

Experts from ScreenSkills, universities and the animation sector agreed that everyone has a part to play in mending the gap and will be meeting again separately to continue the conversation.

Panelists included:
· Natalie Busuttil - Studio Manager, Nexus Studios
· Gareth Ellis-Unwin – Head of Film for ScreenSkills
· Dr. Eddie McCaffrey – Senior Lecturer on BA Film (Production) at Middlesex University
· Kate O’Connor - Executive Chair of Animation UK
· Shelley Page - Independent Talent Executive
· Greg Wade – Policy Manager at Universities UK
· Alexander Williams – Head of Animation at Escape Studios

The Escape Studios Animation Blog offers a personal view on the art of animation and visual effects. To find out more about our new BA/MArt, now recruiting for September 2019, follow this link.   To apply, visit the offical page here.

1 comment:

  1. hello, is there a recording of this session, audio or video? any info would be much appreciated. many thanks hugo