In this blog third year student Tom explains how he was able to gain real life industry experience with the National Youth Film Academy and how you can, too!
What is the National Youth Film Academy (NYFA)?
The National Youth Film Academy (NYFA) is an organisation which helps young people to step into the filmmaking world and to work on a production set supervised by professionals who have already worked in the industry. The academy organises film talks, acting classes and member meetings which bring the community together to brainstorm ideas.
I am a Film, Radio and Television student and I am passionate about all three areas I am studying. I found out about the academy and the SetReady programme through drama student Katie Kent who completed this course last year!
SetReady gives you can opportunity to gain exclusive access to the NYFA network and you have to pass an interview to be allowed to join.
Students studying art, design, music, media or performing arts can easily apply for the SetReady programme offered by the NYFA, thanks to portfolios students may have built throughout their journey at university. Even though you are studying different course you can still apply for the programme at NYFA and show your interest and passion for film during your interview. They are looking for people you admire movies and enjoy working in a team.
SetReady programme at NYFA consists of variety of roles and students can apply to work on the part of the film that they are interested in most.
- Cinematographer/Director of Photography
- Assistant Director
- Script Writer
- Sound Technician
- Make Up Artist
What can you get from SetReady Programme?
This film course is based on pre-production, filming on the location and editing final short film. Entire process is happening and is based in London which gives you many choices in terms of locations. Students are guided by people who work in the film industry and have rich background in this area.
Networking and connecting with people is very important nowadays and therefore the academy aims for getting students together through video calls during this pandemic, so students get to know each other. Also, there is a Facebook group for all members which is very helpful.
Students and young film-makers advertise their portfolios and short films they are working on. I, personally, participated on a short film and worked as a sound recordist which expanded my current skills set. We filmed in London for four days and it was a great experience to be part of the crew. These opportunities are perfect chance to network, share ideas and gain more experience.
Get a behind-the-scenes before applying
If you want to know more about the course and see what the filming looks like, have a look at Katie’s vlog. Katie had a chance to do this course and thanks to her vlog and her personal advice I managed to apply and to be accepted for course as well. It’s worth watching!
Film talks and acting classes
You can also attend to webinars but you need to be a member of the academy to have an access and personal code. These are very helpful if you are interested in working in movies or want to develop your acting skills.
Very interesting talk was with actor Ben Miller. He acted in Johnny English movie and Bridgerton broadcasted on Netflix. Ben shared his own experience working on big production sets with starts from around the world.
Reasons why you should apply!
I recommend signing up for any kind of webinars whether it is with NYFA or with any other organisation. They talk about film producers, directors, actors, careers and many other handy tips and tricks when entering the industry after finishing your final year at university.
These classes make me feel more comfortable and confident when applying for the first job after finishing my degree.
When I applied for participating on the short film, I wasn’t expecting the director to come back to me asking for more details and working with him on the set. It is because I thought I am not experienced enough, however, on the contrary, he was impressed with my CV and the way I am passionate about his project.
Looking for careers advice?
If you’re looking for careers advice I really recommend talking to the Careers and Enterprise Team who can help you develop your personal skills and improve your employability.