Belfast Telegraph

Surf’s up, thanks to Winnie’s creativity

By Margaret Canning

A student has been praised for her use of creative new media at an awards conference in Londonderry.

Winnie Shek won the most creative student award 2010 for her use of creative new media in building up her placement business, Alive Surf School.

Grafton Recruitment won the Northern Ireland Steps to Creativity Project 2010 Award at the Steps to Creativity Programme, part of the Showcase Conference at University of Ulster, Magee Campus.

Steps to Creativity helped 10 traditional companies around Northern Ireland to identify a digital creative project related to their business activity which would benefit from exposure to creative sector expertise.

Each business received mentoring from a creative industries professional to help with the project.

Full time support from a creative industry student, paid by the programme, was also provided to implement the digital project within an eight-week period from July to September 2010.

The programme was funded through the Arts Council for Northern Ireland’s creative industries innovation fund and managed by the Northern Ireland Business and Innovation Centre (NORIBIC).

The awards recognised the work carried out by all participants. Miss Shek said: “I developed a social media strategy for Alive Surf School in Portrush which utilised the power of new technologies and creative social media techniques.

“It was a great opportunity for me to express my creativity, develop time-management skills and to push the boundaries both for myself and for Alive Surf School.

“I have had the chance to build a great network and thanks to the placement now have a number of job offers.”

Alice Burns, human resources manager of Grafton Recruitment, said the company benefited from taking part. “With the support of creative industry professional, James Cunningham, and the innovative approach of student Francis Byrne, the team developed an impressive e-learning tool.

“In the digital age e-learning is very much becoming the most flexible and cost effective way of training and developing staff.

“We have been testing the platform for a pilot study and now plan to roll this out across our business later in the year.”

Belfast Telegraph