A major television production company is partnering with Teesside University to retain skills in the region and offer more opportunities for students.

Signpost Productions will work with staff and students from the University’s School of Computing, Engineering & Digital Technologies and School of Arts & Creative Industries on a range of collaborative opportunities.

The two academic schools have a strong history of supporting graduates into a variety of careers in media and production including journalists, sound engineers, animation and production roles. The University also boasts state-of-the art industry-standard audio-visual facilities.

Signpost Productions is a part of ITV, the UK’s biggest commercial broadcaster, and, from its base in Gateshead, produces 1,500 hours of content every year for broadcasters, businesses, commercial brands and digital channels. Signpost has a rich history of diverse programme making and works closely with a range of clients ensuring that their content is as diverse as possible and has the maximum reach.

The two-year partnership has been formalised in a Memorandum of Understanding committing the two organisations to working together across on multiple projects utilising their joint strengths.

These include:

  • working together to design and deliver new degree modules.
  • supporting student development through internships and work placements.
  • providing guest lectures and masterclasses.
  • exploring collaborative research opportunities.
  • supporting diversity and inclusion within the University.

Students have already had the opportunity to work on programmes with Signpost Productions. Interior Design students created a live set to be used on an up and coming fishing programme with Robson Green and Jim Murray. The Geordie actor came to the University to meet the students and thank them for all their hard work. An intern also spent the summer with Signpost Productions working on a programme for BBC2 Daytime. Both programmes will be on air next year.

Dominic Dunn, Principal Lecturer in the School of Computing, Engineering & Digital Technologies, said: “This partnership will help to bridge the gap between industry and education.

“The convergence between the creative and digital industries is growing all the time and our strengths in these areas mean we are perfectly poised to support Signpost Productions as they look to take advantage of new technologies and opportunities.

“Being able to work directly with industry help us shape our curriculum to ensure it remains relevant to industry needs, ensuring our graduates can make an immediate impact in the workplace.

“This partnership will really open doors to our students offering them the opportunity to work directly on real projects with a professional broadcaster.”

Kenny Toal, Managing Director of Signpost Productions, added: “A key aim of this partnership is to keep talent and skills in this region to support our industry.

“By working with the University we want to promote and provide opportunities to students through real world experience, offering feedback on their work and demonstrating the opportunities that are available to them here in the North-East.”