AFTRS has announced the five recipients of its expanded 2020 AFTRS Graduate Program, an industry partnership between AFTRS, Australia’s leading screen and broadcast school, and the ABC, Endemol Shine Australia, Fremantle Media, SBS and Sky News Australia.
The Graduate Program creates employment pathways for the most creative, skilled and motivated AFTRS graduates from the Bachelor of Arts (Screen). In a fiercely competitive industry, the program gives them exposure, training and a chance to experience roles in everything from development and production to marketing and programming during a 13-week paid engagement with a participating host organisation.
In 2020, five AFTRS graduates have secured places in the Graduate Program. Belinda Parry will join the ABC, Jaimie Conlon will join Endemol Shine, Grace Anderson will join Fremantle Media, Danielle Abou Karam has joined SBS, and Otto Khoo will join Sky News Australia’s Sydney bureau.
Nell Greenwood, AFTRS CEO, said: “AFTRS is so delighted with the expansion of the graduate program this year and the commitment and generosity of our partners. Internships are critical to building robust pipe-lines for Australian talent, and this program is an exciting opportunity for some of our most talented graduating students to hone their professional skills and creativity with the support of world-class production leaders.”
Michael Carrington, ABC Director, Entertainment & Specialist Division, said: “We are delighted to welcome AFTRS graduate Belinda Parry to work on the production and development of flagship ABC Factual programs such as Catalyst and Compass. Opportunity is everything in this industry. And the ABC is proud to help emerging Australian creatives from diverse backgrounds to flourish.”
Peter Newman, CEO, Endemol Shine Australia said: “We at Endemol Shine Australia are thrilled to be a part of this valuable graduate program. In 2020 we have been extremely impressed with the calibre, passion and enthusiasm of the AFTRS students, as well as their impressive levels of creativity. We wish all the graduating students the best of luck with their careers in the television industry and very much look forward to welcoming Jaimie Conlon to ESA for her graduate placement in 2021.”
Chris Oliver-Taylor, CEO Asia Pacific, Fremantle Media, said: “Fremantle is thrilled to work closely with AFTRS on their graduate program. Part of the responsibilities of organisations like Fremantle is to ensure that the next generation of creative talent has the opportunity to work professionally in Australia. As such, we are delighted to be working with Grace Anderson, who is another example of world-class AFTRS-developed Australian talent.”
John Godfrey, Head of Unscripted, SBS, said: “We’re delighted to be a part of the AFTRS Graduate Program this year, providing important opportunities for the next generation of talent in our sector. At SBS, ensuring we’re supporting the development of emerging and diverse professionals is essential in contributing to storytelling that reflects and explores contemporary Australia, now and in the future. It’s great to have Danielle Abou Karam in the team, who is already working across some of our exciting new content for 2021.”
Paul Whittaker, Sky News Australia Chief Executive Officer, said: “The AFTRS Graduate Program is a terrific opportunity for a graduate to experience the intensive hands-on experience required to enter and thrive in the dynamic broadcast industry. Sky News Australia is proud to welcome Otto Khoo as our 2021 AFTRS Graduate Program recipient.”
AFTRS graduates gain transferrable experience, build relationships and further develop career goals through a 13-week paid work contract. The program has had a very high success rate and has seen participants in previous years go on to be offered casual, part and full-time employment with the host organisations.
Previous host organisations supporting and fostering emerging talent from AFTRS have included Discovery Networks, Disney Channel, Foxtel, Fox Sports, TVSN, BBC Worldwide Australia, ESPN, Nickelodeon and Aurora Community Channel.
Organisations interested in being part of AFTRS 2021 Graduate Program are encouraged to contact AFTRS at: firstname.lastname@example.org