Back in January the college invited industry professionals from a ‘pop up’ digital media company known as Digital Advantage. Based in Manchester, their aim was to deliver a hands on digital workshop to create and develop a business idea with our Creative Media Production & Technology students. The first few sessions were based around idea generation and feasibility, the students demonstrated divergent and convergent thinking where each idea was pitched and carefully considered before the final votes were tallied. From the fruits of their labour, ‘JARRD’ was born.

Once JARRD went forward, the group were split into design, marketing and research teams respectively. The whole process was done under the watchful eyes and guidance of Dominic Williams (the programme mentor - a media industry professional with over 20 years’ experience) and Kevin Clark-Patterson (college tutor with 10 years professional experience). Every design and decision the students made were their own as this was ultimately their product, they were to effectively be the company shareholders should the product launch with a cash investment from Digital Advantage! To add a finishing touch to the project, the students made a 3 minute promotional video of their product, detailing: purpose, target audience, costing, feasibility, and mobile platforms. The students reflected on their work and awaited the awards ceremony for a chance to win the big cash prize of £2000 to bring the idea to fruition.

The awards presentation was recently held in May at The County Hall in Preston and was presented by Andy Walker who is the Head of Service, Business, Growth and Innovation for Lancashire County Council. Antony Chesworth who is the CEO and founder of EKM_UK was a guest speaker who told us his own inspirational life story (he showed us pictures of his yacht and Ferrari) and how projects like this can help launch the next big app or idea or entrepreneur.

Speaking about the experience, Kevin Clark-Patterson said: “there were a number of other schools and colleges from all over Lancashire that took part in the event and while we unfortunately didn’t win we could comfortably hold our heads high on a job well done and well as reflect on the journey of thinking, learning, debating and preparing a product for launch in a total of only four challenging but ultimately rewarding days.

The workshop has secured funding for next year which is great news as it is a great programme and it is something that we as a College would welcome the opportunity and challenge again next year.”

 

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