NextGen Skills Academy, a pioneering organisation backed by both government and industry investment will ensure that, from this September, breaking into the creative sector will be more of a reality than ever before for students aged 16+.

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NextGen is today pleased to announce that it will launch its first course, the Level 3 Extended Diploma in Games, Animation and VFX Skills – comparable to three A Levels. Colleges offering the new diploma across England include: the North East Surrey College of Technology (NESCOT), Sunderland College, Truro & Penwith College and Uxbridge College.

As well as the delivery of relevant and up to date course content that has been written by industry to replicate today’s real-world work environment, students joining the course will have unprecedented access to industry mentors and industry-designed live briefs, set and assessed by a group of leading companies from the sectors being studied.

Over two years, students will build portfolios relevant to industry needs, and as preparation for a progression to higher education or higher apprenticeships. Interested students can find out more by visiting http://www.nextgenskillsacademy.com/students/

In addition to the Extended Diploma, NextGen is supporting a selection of industry partners in the creation of four Higher Apprenticeships; two in games and two in VFX. The games apprenticeships are for a Quality Assurance Technician led by Rebellion, and a Community Coordinator led by Ubisoft. The two VFX apprenticeship placements are for a Junior 2D Artist led by Double Negative, and an Assistant Technical Director led by Framestore. These Apprenticeships are expected to be available to young people later in 2015.