Music Masterclass
Jamie Hardesty

Returning development programme set to boost entrepreneurial Sunderland creatives

Digital development agency Generator has invested a six-figure sum to bring back a development programme to the region, aimed at supporting emerging entrepreneurs and creatives.

Previously based in Newcastle, the programme is moving to Sunderland this Autumn in a bid to reach out to more of the region’s young people.

Ladders will support 18-24 year olds wishing to pursue a career in the creative and digital industries, acknowledging the need for more interaction between educators and employers.

The programme offers 12-week, part time courses in music, film and TV and software development delivered in part by local creative and digital professionals.

Ladders will begin in Sunderland on September 22nd, with delivery taking place in key venues across the city, from Sunderland University to Sunderland Software City.

Delivered in partnership with local organisations This is Creative Enterprise, Foundation Futures and Youth Focus: North East, Ladders places are free (yet limited) and available on the Generator website.

Speaking on the relaunch of the programme, Ladders Coordinator, Cal Kilpatrick said: “Young people deserve more support in making decisions about their careers.

“Ladders is an opportunity for beneficiaries to test the water, developing practical, sector specific skills, networking with professionals, visiting relevant businesses and getting to grips with their chosen industry.

“Generator are proud to be offering something free, and unaccredited. There are enough opportunities out there to pass or fail, but this is about their own professional development.”

Over the last year, 50 young people have been through the programme to develop their careers.

Sisley Henning and Peter Banks completed the first Film and TV course after finding a flyer in the Jobcentre. Together, they’ve since gone on to start their own production company, Fandangle Films.

When asked about the impact of Ladders, Sisley commented: “We met so many interesting professionals from different creative backgrounds, all of whom have given us the tools we need to start a business. Thanks to Ladders, we’ve made a career doing what we love”.

Other students from the programme have since moved on to freelance work, junior industry roles and higher education courses in graphic design, web development and events.

Adam Robson has been writing his own music since leaving school, and was finally able to record through the Ladders music programme. “Thanks to the Ladders team, I’ve achieved a massive goal by producing my first track in the studio.

“The whole experience has been amazing, I now have contacts in the music industry and the confidence to write and record professionally”.

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