MA Children’s Digital Media Production student Sinead Lynch has already landed herself a job at the BBC and she hasn’t even graduated yet.
Sinead explained: “I’m responsible for managing the kit and equipment, organising transport and accommodation for shoots, drawing up call sheets, arranging training for staff, looking after new starters, plus recently I’ve been helping to organise some international shoots.
“I mostly work in the production office, but occasionally I help out with the autocue in the studio, and have gone along on school visits to speak to children about what they think of Newsround.”
Sinead got her foot in the door at the BBC through a University work placement opportunity at children’s sketch show DNN and was invited back to do some runner work thereafter.
“I met with the CBBC talent manager to discuss future opportunities,” she continued, “and the following week the role in Newsround came up. It was a combination of good timing, the right contacts, and – most importantly – a good recommendation from my work placement.
“I’ve worked really hard throughout my postgraduate course, taking on every opportunity for work experience and training, so I’m really glad that it’s all paid off. also feel very lucky that the chance to work on such a big show came up at the exact time I needed it!”
The experience and skills gained through her course were also crucial for Sinead in being appointed to the BBC role. She said: “If I hadn’t done the MA Children’s Digital Media Production course at the University of Salford I definitely wouldn’t be in this job now.
“Being so close to the BBC and studying such a specific subject have both been vital to securing this position. During the course, we got to work with departments including the Writersroom and BBC Learning, so I had the opportunity to gain loads of contacts and industry experience before I’d even stepped into the ‘real world’.”
Sinead isn’t sure what her ultimate career goal is as yet, but in 2014 she’s starting a new job where she’ll be visiting schools and running feedback sessions with the CBeebies and CBBC audiences.
“I’m really excited about that,” she added, “and I’d also love to work someday in development, coming up with new formats and ideas for shows. I really have no idea what job I’ll be doing 10 years from now, but I’m pretty sure it will still be in children’s digital production.”
Beth Hewitt, Programme Leader for the MA in Children's Digital Media Production, said: “Sinead was a great student on the course, working extremely hard and always being creative in her approach. She made the most of every opportunity that came along to develop her understanding of the media industry with specific focus on children's content development.
“The Media Masters courses based at MediaCityUK work collaboratively with the media industry providing work experience, live briefs and guest speakers for the postgraduate students. We have developed strong working links with children's media producers and CBBC and CBeebies, enabling students to glean a thorough understanding of what the industry requires from new entrants.”