Visual effects giant Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) has pledged to work with Teesside University, providing exciting opportunities for students and academics.
ILM, which was founded by filmmaker George Lucas and has become synonymous with ground-breaking visual effects, has its headquarters in San Francisco, with bases in London, Singapore, Vancouver and Sydney.
ILM London has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Teesside University, formalising a commitment to work together and maximise collaborative opportunities.
The Memorandum of Understanding is a joint commitment from both parties to share experience and expertise. This will include exploring research opportunities, development of academic programmes, live projects for students, involvement in recruitment activities and exchange opportunities for staff and students.
The School of Computing, Engineering & Digital Technologies will hold ILM Days for students, with dedicated days of activities. ILM will also work with the University to look at diversity in the sector and support the annual Hello World conference, which aims to dispel the myth that computing is just for boys.
Sue Lyster, Director of Studio Operations, ILM London, said: “We employ hundreds of people and we’re always hungry for talent, so we look to key institutions who we know produce great talent.
“Equally it is important for students completing their studies to explore their creativity, express themselves and broaden their horizons, as we need talent and employees with certain skills.”
She added: “We are excited to be partnering with a key player in animation courses and Teesside University has always provided us with strong junior talent.
“We can work together to identify industry skills gaps and needs, offer advice on preparing students for the workplace and contribute to curriculum development. This partnership will provide enormous opportunities for those that want to work with us.”
Professor Jane Turner OBE DL, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Enterprise and Business Engagement), said: “This is a very exciting collaboration with a global player, which further illustrates the University’s absolute commitment to work hand in hand with business.
“This partnership will benefit our students and graduates in many ways and ultimately create a pool of talent that ILM can directly access. It will also provide ILM the opportunity to engage with our academic research capability. Ultimately, through joint working, we will ensure that our graduates are absolutely job-ready and provide platforms to further develop the staff from both of our organisations.”