NextGen Skills Academy visited Southern Regional College’s Banbridge campus on Tuesday 27th September to speak with students on upcoming projects. The College recently partnered up with NextGen to increase students’ employability prospects within the creative gaming industry, one of Northern Ireland’s fastest growing sectors.
Students will collaborate with industry partners to build skills and expertise in gaming, animation and visual effects. At the event students heard about how they will be working on the ‘Spaceship Fleet Challenge’, a week-long project where students are pitted against other students from different Colleges to develop 3D modelling, communication and team working skills. Students will have the chance to showcase their art, maths, science, physics, computer coding and even some music skills, in an attempt to wow the experts. During the placement, Industry partners will provide valuable feedback on projects, and the top-performing team from each college will have the chance to present their work to a panel of Industry professionals.
NextGen works with employers to develop formal qualifications and training to address the skills gap and shortages in the Games, Animation and Visual Effects industry. SRC is uniquely positioned to address this shortage with its Level 3 Games, Animation and Visual Effects Extended Diploma, equivalent to three A-levels, after which students can progress to the Level 5 Higher National Diploma in Creative Media Production – Games Development. The Level 3 Extended Diploma is offered on SRC’s Banbridge and Newry campuses, with the HND offered exclusively at the Newry campus.
NextGen works in partnership with industry partners and educators to offer students exceptional opportunities to develop the skills employers truly value. By enrolling on the Level 3 Extended Diploma students can actively engage in game creation rather than just passively consuming content. The NextGen partnership brings together Further Education curriculum with the practical realities of the industry, under the guidance of experienced lecturers who provide students with the tools and practice to advance their career prospects.
Marie McArdle, Curriculum Area Manager for Computing, Design and Academic Studies at Southern Regional College commented:
“We are excited to be offering students the opportunity to collaborate with some of the biggest names in Games Development. Students will have the opportunity to work on some of the biggest briefs in Games Development. This kind of exposure to real life projects will pay students back ten fold in terms of experience, as it will give them the edge as they move into the industry post education”.