KFC, WPP and Mail Metro Media back adland careers programme in schools

Advertising professionals from around 30 companies will take part in Brixton Finishing School initiative.

Brixton Finishing School and industry partners will deliver the school-based programme
Brixton Finishing School and industry partners will deliver the school-based programme

A national programme to encourage school children to consider a career in the advertising sector is set to launch with the help of major advertising agencies, brands and media organisations.

The new ADventure programme will see industry figures from WPP, KFC and Mail Metro Media return to their own schools – or those with a diverse intake – to talk to pupils about the different roles on offer in adland.

Run by Brixton Finishing School, which offers advertising training to young people with the aim of improving the diversity of the sector, the initiative will launch in November.

It aims to reach 100,000 children aged between 14 and 18 from under-represented backgrounds in state schools in its pilot year.

Around 30 other organisations, including Associated Newspapers, Adam & Eve/DDB, Discovery Inc, Mother, MullenLowe and Snap, will also take part in the scheme by delivering an assembly showing the range of roles on offer that do not always require university training.

Common People, an industry forum for working-class people in adland, and educational-tech charity Founders4Schools, will also take part.

Students interested to learn more will be offered bitesize learning and career development tips by Brixton Finishing School.

Brixton Finishing School non-executive director and writer-in-residence (and former Campaign staffer) Yasmin Arrigo, who devised the project, said the aim was to “kickstart” an interest in the sector early on.

She said: “Each year, our students tell us that they wished they’d known about the industry when they were at school. We want to kickstart that awareness early, at a point when young people first start to consider their career choices, and to highlight how multi-faceted this dynamic industry is.”

Michaela Eschbach, managing director at Founders4Schools, said: "Over the past year the industry has realised the importance of attracting young people from diverse backgrounds, as career pathways within the digital, creative and advertising industries can offer a broad range of choices for young people to pursue.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Brixton Finishing School, so that students can explore a multitude of professions within the advertising industry they may otherwise continue to overlook.”