In late June, worldwide producer and distributor Fremantle hosted a networking day for RTS Bursary scholars and mentors at its London head office.
Current and previous bursary scholars attended, together with Fremantle representatives, RTS mentors and other leading industry figures.
RTS bursaries consultant Anne Dawson said that these opportunities were “so important”, because “they give our students a connection to the industry they wouldn’t otherwise have”.
Fremantle CEO Simon Andreae welcomed attendees, and affirmed his company’s belief in the “strong link between the maximum creativity that goes into production and the maximum level of diversity across the teams”. This, he said, was why Fremantle was attracted to the RTS bursary schemes.
As well as the financial support the schemes provide students, Andreae also praised the “very special mentor-mentee relationship”. This, he added, was “not just a one-way street”.
Andreae himself mentors RTS scholar Meg Maguire, who recently completed an internship at Fremantle.
Several other RTS mentors were in attendance, including Piera Cuttica, head of post production at Manor Productions, who last year employed her mentee, Alicia Newing, as a technical assistant.
“It is a funny business, television,” said Andreae, who noted that, “when you leave college, there are no obvious routes in to it.”
His hope was that, through mentorship and networking events like these, “we help to break that cycle of difficulty when people first try to enter the industry”.
Fremantle is the creative force behind a wide range of well-known shows, including Grand Designs, The Investigation and Too Hot to Handle.