ELAM trainees light up Universal

Over the last two weeks, 38 trainees from East London Arts & Music (ELAM) have been working with many of the teams across Universal Music. They finished their work experience with a showcase in our Kensington High Street cafe (pictured is Lucy Kevil with guitarist Molly Burman)

Sarah Parke, who has been working with the UK communications team has interviewed some of her fellow trainees to get the lowdown on their time at Universal. She said: “By having conversations with my peers they would agree that the past two weeks have been an incredible experience. Learning about the industry has been an eye opener, particularly seeing just how much works goes in behind the scenes. I think one of my personal highlights was being able to watch Jhené Aiko in concert where she performed her latest album at KOKO Camden. An hour of queuing in freezing temperatures was well worth it!”

Jennifer Damian who worked with UMC’s A&R team says, “I found the whole two weeks fun and pretty interesting. I have learnt a lot of new things about jobs that I didn’t even know existed, and I feel that the things I have learnt to do will help me in the future. My highlight was visiting the EMI Archives. It was so interesting to learn about the history of EMI and see how all the music we have is stored.”

Lily Cowan, who has been working with the international marketing team said, “I have loved spending two weeks here and I don’t want to leave! I have learnt so much and met some brilliant people. Working here has also given me a different perspective on the music industry which I am grateful for.”

Polydor A&R trainee, Ellie Carney said, “I’ve found my work experience really beneficial to me and my career. Meeting people with experience in the industry and networking has been a big highlight. Getting to know how the world of A&R works has also been amazing.”

Naomi Frimpong, who has been working with Polydor’s marketing team said, “My experience has allowed me to understand what will occur when I become an artist in terms of promoting music and how it will be advertised on different platforms such as Snapchat and advertisements on TV or online.”

Universal Music is a founding partner of ELAM, the free school for 16-19-year-olds set up in September 2014 by Will Kennard, one half of Virgin EMI recording artists Chase & Status. This is the fourth year Universal Music has taken trainees and ahead of the work experience, the HR team hosted a workshop at the school to provide the students with practical advice on writing cover letters, putting together a CV and how to gain the most out of their experience. Universal Music also provides masterclasses and mentors for many of the trainees throughout the year.

ELAM continues to go from strength to strength and last year was given the highest possible grading - “Outstanding” – in its first inspection by Ofsted, the UK government’s Office for Standards in Education, Children's Services and Skills.

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