Partners going higher with Channel 4

Go Higher West Yorkshire’s partners are well prepared to support the growth of a skilled workforce to Channel 4, which recently announced it will be opening its new national HQ in Leeds.

The broadcaster will create 300 jobs in the city and will move around 200 of its existing staff to the region. This will create exciting opportunities for the local population who work or have studied in the creative industries. It will also give a significant boost to the regional economy.

West Yorkshire has one of the youngest and fastest growing multi-cultural labour markets in the UK, with a wide range of talented individuals graduating from our wealth of higher education providers. Many of these remain in the region but amid growing concern over low graduate retention levels, Channel 4’s decision will give them even more opportunities to succeed after they leave education.

The region already has strong links to screen and a thriving independent production sector. This will be enhanced by the new state of the art £80m creative arts facility that Leeds Beckett University is opening in the city centre. It already offers an MA in Filmmaking, as does Leeds Arts University – which has its own industry standard filmmaking studios – and the University of Bradford.

Leeds City College and Bradford College, meanwhile, are preparing the next generation of backstage talent with degree courses in Fashion Theatrical and Media Makeup, and Media Makeup and Special Effects respectively. Leeds College of Building is likewise well placed to provide a skilled workforce for the backstage infrastructure through its Carpentry and Joinery diploma.

Calderdale College is training a new cohort of video editors with its Film & Photography BTEC, while the University of Leeds is ready to equip young people with the skills to think critically about the social impact of news with its Communication & Media BA.

Channels 4’s move will also boost demand in the broader industry and will create jobs in the corporate sector.

The University of Huddersfield and Leeds Trinity University are set to benefit from this with their BA in Broadcast Journalism. Kirklees College and Wakefield College, meanwhile, offer an apprenticeship in Leadership and Management, and a CIPD course in Human Resource Consultant / Partner respectively.

All partners offer a wide range of other relevant courses that will help boost the channel’s workforce, and bring incalculable benefits to the region’s economy.