Every year the British Interactive Media Association organises Digital Day, when professionals from a broad range of digital industries head back to school to spend a day tackling challenges with students.
The UK faces a skills gap in digital industries, and Digital Day is just one of the many initiatives run by BIMA to encourage more young people to consider a career in digital. With almost every job being overhauled by digital technologies, the fact that digital will be a big part of their working lives is no surprise to students, but there’s still a way to go in helping them understand what types of roles and careers are open to them. Digital Day is about breaking down that mystery, with agencies like Screenmedia partnering with a local school to tackle challenges set by major brands.
This was our first year taking part in Digital Day, and we were delighted to be partnered with another group of first-timers, Clydebank High School in our own backyard of Glasgow. 40 Clydebank S2 students, currently preparing to make their subject choices for the next year, gathered in the assembly hall under the tutelage of their teacher Miss Lumsden to prepare for the day.
The day kicked off with an introduction by Screenmedia, explaining who we are, what our agency does, who we work with and some of the awesome things our team gets up to. This was followed by a series of videos from BIMA with people across a whole range of digital agencies and specialisms outlining their role and how they got into digital.
Up next we checked out the challenges. This year there were three to choose from:
The students divided into eight groups of five, and decided on which of the three challenges their group was going to tackle. We achieved a good spread, with three groups picking the ocean challenge, three more picking Wimbledon, and the final two picking the challenge set by EPAM. Challenges picked, it was on the creative part of the day.
First, the students set out to find out what they could about their challenge. Armed with Chromebooks for research and their phones (the only day they were encouraged to use them!), they looked for references of what others were doing in the space, and examined the challenge sponsors’ markets. From this they started to put together ideas for how they would tackle the challenge, narrowing down to their final choice.
Having chosen how they wanted to tackle their chosen challenge, the students set about designing their ideas. We were impressed with the variety in how they expressed their vision, from sketches and illustrations through to storyboards, wireframes and designed-up solutions using graphics software.
Finally, each group put together a Dragon’s Den-style presentation to pitch their idea. In turns they talked the judges (that’s us!) through their challenge, how they came up with their idea, what they believed the solution should look like, and what the social and commercial impact of the solution was.
We were impressed with some of the ideas the students came up with, including:
We loved being part of Digital Day with Clydebank High School, and are sure to be back next year. It was really fun working with the students and inspiring to see some of the great ideas they came up with. If you’re interested in a career in digital, check out our careers section to see where you would fit in!