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Rise partners BT Sport and Sky to launches children’s education programme ‘Rise-Up’

Rise at IBC2019

Gender diversity advocacy group Rise has launched a new schools outreach programme aimed at educating children about opportunities in the broadcast and media space.

Rise has collaborated with BT Sport, Sky and other industry players to launch ‘Rise-Up’ – an industry-led initiative which aims to highlight the technology and engineering opportunities offered by media, broadcast and entertainment companies.

Over the last year, Rise – which was launched in 2017 – has worked alongside universities and key industry partners to examine the current shortfall of new talent entering the broadcast technology sector, specifically examining engineering and technical operational roles

It found that universities are struggling to recruit both male and female talent in broadcast engineering-related courses, leading to a shortfall in recruitment across the sector.

Read more: Rise recognises outstanding women

During a roundtable held in June of this year, Rise looked at issues including barriers to entry, recruitment struggles, and how the industry can change this.

Representatives from the likes of BT Sport, Sky, dB Broadcast, EMS Technical Personnel and the BBC recommended several actions, including an initiative that encourages talent in primary and secondary schools to look at engineering and technical roles as potential career paths.

“In order to fully achieve a gender-balanced workforce and also to ensure more broadly that there is a pipeline of diverse talent coming into the industry, we believe that this work ne to be undertaken,” affirmed Rise director Carrie Wootten.

“This programme of work will only be successful if there is a collective effort from across the industry. We are actively looking for more industry partners to commit to this vision of encouraging a new generation of talent to enter the sector.”

Since its beginning in 2017, Rise has delivered a mentoring programme, produced a series of events, seminars, and conferences and most recently launched its inaugural Rise Awards, which was held at IBC2019.

Read more: Rise up – Mentoring women to succeed in broadcasting

Rise-Up will take place as a series of workshops delivered throughout the UK. Tying into the stage 3 STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) curriculum.

Over the course of the day, students built a studio and then recorded a quiz show dubbed, ‘Rise-Up’. Students were overjoyed and fascinated by the day, with some of them aspiring to be engineers when they grow up, Rise said.

“I will definitely take up an engineering career,” said one girl, aged 10, who took part in a test workshop led by BT Sport chief engineer Andy Beale at a primary school near Reading.

Beale said: “Since its launch in 2013, BT Sport is proud to have used the power of sport to change lives through several charitable and industry initiatives. These include The Supporters Club which has supported thousands of youngsters into employment and training. Today’s announcement builds on this commitment, while also deepening our commitment to the local community in which we are based.”

Rise-Up has commitment from the following industry partners: BT Sport, Sky, dB Broadcast, EMS Personnel, IABM and the DPP.