Birmingham students broken out of college for trip to recording studio
Students taken to dream job experience placement in Dublin
22 October 2013
On Thursday 17 October, City & Guilds surprised three music technology students from South & City College Birmingham by taking them out of their college and flying them to Dublin to experience a day’s work experience at the world renowned Windmill Lane studios. The event is part of a series of ‘Open doors’ experiences leading up to The Skills Show, which takes place between 14 and 16 November.
At the studios, the students Liam Shannon, Jaime Clarke and Kirk Williams met with international producers, sound engineers and current and ex-students of Pulse College which is based at the studios, including Kieran Lynch and Mark Dwyer. The students worked with them on a live band recording and grilled them for industry insights and tips.
Pulse College at Windmill Lane Studios is Ireland's premier recording facility and has been at the heart of the Irish recording industry since 1978. The Rolling Stones, David Bowie and Lady Gaga have all recorded at the studios.
Student Liam Shannon, 18, was one of the lucky students to be picked. He said: “It was a day full of surprises. I was told to come to college early, then at 7am we were told we would be going on a plane. Once we got to the airport we found out that we were going to Dublin.
'You don’t expect this kind of thing to happen to you! At the studios, we did two takes of recording a live band. The equipment there was really cool- very expensive and professional and having the chance to actually work with it was something I thought I would never get to do. We spoke to two very well known producers who have worked with loads of artists, and they gave us some really good advice about how to get your foot in the door of the industry.
'I wanted to be a sound engineer or producer before. This opportunity has really spurred me on to keep working hard to reach my goal.'
Naomi Moore at Windmill Lane Studios, also commented, ‘We are a firm believer in giving young people the opportunity to learn about the industry through on the job experience. This day at Dublin’s Windmill Lane Studios is an opportunity to do just this, by physically connecting learners and employers.’
Meanwhile, Chris Jones, CEO and Director General of City & Guilds, said: ‘We know young people benefit from direct interaction with employers. We know they want high-quality work experience placements. But we need commitment from employers to provide these opportunities so young people can make the most of their potential and find a career that makes them happy. That’s why we have worked with Windmill Lane Studios to offer this unique experience.’
‘There is a constant misconception that academic studies are the only way to a high-flying career, which isn’t true. As a result, we’re seeing ever-increasing skills gaps in a number of industries. Through this activity and our participation in The Skills Show we aim to demonstrate that this really shouldn’t be the case.'
In the build up to this year's Skills Show, City & Guilds is opening doors for young people to inspire them about their futures. It has teamed up with top employers and YouTube personalities (such as thatcher Joe Sugg) to highlight opportunities and explore different skills pathways.
Visit City & Guilds YouTube channel to find out more, or follow #opendoors on Twitter.