Careers & Progression Day

May 16, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Academy, Big Creative Apprenticeships, Big Creative Education, Big Creative Training
On April 27th Big Creative Academy campus hosted our annual Careers and Progression Takeover; a day devoted to exploring career opportunities and educational progression for our learners at both Big Creative Training and our Academy. We invited a number of exhibitors in to have one-to-one chats with our learners about the opportunities open to them once completing their time studying with us at BCE. The third floor of our Academy was transformed into an exhibition space where various organisations and universities were on hand to deliver expert advice from how to make your CV the best it can be to opportunities available with St John Ambulance. As well as giving learners the chance to browse the exhibitors, they had the chance to take part in interactive workshops with Leap; Confronting Conflict, The British Council and Waltham Forest Y.I.A.G.
The Careers & Progression Takeover is an excellent way to connect our learners to fantastic opportunities that contribute to their professional and personal progression, in addition to building the necessary skills for a sustainable career in the creative industries…” Anthony Brathwaite - (Careers & Progression Officer/Organiser of Careers of The Careers & Progression Takeover)
Special thanks to Anthony Brathwaite and the student services team for doing a fantastic job of organising the day!

Industry Guest – Raf Riley

May 9, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Education, Music

Member of the OddChild family, Raf Riley, took a trip to our Academy to meet our level 2 and 3 music performance and technology learners. Known for his unique style of production, Raf has worked with a roster of artists including Etta Bond, Avelino, Lady Leshurr, Stormzy & more! During his visit, he spoke about the steps he took in his career and how he ended up collaborating with some of the UK’s most successful artists as well as spoke about his preferred production software and his views on current popular music. Once quizzed with questions, our music performance learners took to the stage for the opportunity to perform to Raf and receive feedback on their chosen song; Raf was particularly impressed with our Academy band!

Industry Tips – Alex Manzi

May 4, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Education, Marketing & PR, Music



At our Careers & Progression Day we were joined by the BBC 1XTRA Outreach team who held a discussion about their own career progression and the work experience opportunities available at BBC Radio 1XTRA.

Social Media Producer for BBC Radio 1XTRA Alex Manzi shared some of his most valuable tips when trying to succeed in your chosen career:

1. Nothing is handed to you on a plate. Be prepared to put in extra hours outside of school/college/work.
2. If you’re really passionate about what you do, these extra hours should never feel like work.
3. You will find obstructions along the way, but you need to have the fight to overcome them.
4. Don’t ever compare yourself to anyone else. You have your own story to write and journey to follow.
5. Focus on the small goals instead of the end goal. You will get there if you do all of the right things along the way.
6. Very important! Never stop learning about what it is you want to do. Knowledge is king.
7. If you start out trying to chase the money, you’re already taking the wrong approach. You should be doing it for the love of doing it.
8. Ask for advice. There are plenty of people like myself who will try to offer help where they can.
9. Take inspiration from the people around you, as well as the people you look up to.
10. Don’t let exam results or grades define you. They only make the next step slightly easier. You can achieve anything you want.


Alex also records and uploads chats with industry professionals as ‘Dreamer’s Disease’ on SoundCloud, have a listen to his latest podcast where he speaks to Artist Manager and Record Label Owner Moz  about getting a foot in the record industry, his experiences in different working environments, how a life-threatening operation changed his outlook, what he learnt from being on tour with Chance The Rapper and loads more!

BCT Ofsted Report

May 3, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Training

Staff and students at Big Creative Training were visited by Ofsted from 15-17 March 2017.

We’re pleased to announce that we have received the status ‘Good’ across all categories!

Key Findings BCT Ofsted
Full Ofsted Report

Learners Make and Sell with MyBnk

April 20, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Education, Big Creative Training

Our Big Creative Training learners put on their entrepreneurial hats to design, create and sell their own T-shirts and tote bags in Walthamstow Market as part of the MyBnk Business Battle project, supported by the London Stock Exchange Group, which helps youths from London’s poorest boroughs learn negotiating and customer interaction skills. Our learners managed to make a £50 profit from an interest-free £50 micro loan in four days of selling. MyBnk is a UK-based charity who’s mission is to teach young people how to manage their money and set up their own enterprise. MyBnk’s experts deliver practical enterprise experiences by giving young people access to interest-free loans and market places to set up their own initiatives.

“At the beginning of the week I wanted to be a rapper, but now I want to set up my own business.” - Aman Guhinya, BCT student


Academy March Newsletter

April 10, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Academy

bca newsletter 1

newsletter 2

This newsletter was created by Academy learners Ela, Lottie, Patryk, Tiayanna and Makkadus.

Wellbeing Boost For Academy Learners

April 3, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Academy, Big Creative Education

Students at our Academy had a whole day to concentrate on their own wellbeing as part of our school’s ethos of character education. Collaborating with youth services within the borough of Waltham Forest and local police, we  hosted a carousel of workshops for students to learn about maintaining good mental health, anti-bullying, how to manage conflict effectively, substance misuse and their rights in stop and search. Students also received a motivational lecture from Paul Oginsky, an expert in character education, where the aim is “to claim self-esteem as a foundation for the student journey”.

As our Academy is home to creative arts students, the day had its own unique flavour with performances and music throughout. The music students also held a charity gig for the Give a Gig campaign raising money for Youth Music. Our Academy runs a Wellbeing programme alongside vocational courses to provide a framework for students to learn. Singer/Songwriter Raphaella also visited our campus to speak on her work with the #iSTANDfor anti-bullying campaign where she spoke on her experience as a victim and performed her single ‘Beautiful Like Me’ to a room of lucky learners.

“Many of our students have experienced social barriers in their lives and, by focusing on wellbeing, the Academy helps students overcome them. We want to emphasise students’ positive values and enable them to have the resilience to succeed.” - Sacha Corcoran MBE

Students found the workshops interesting and insightful. One student commented, “the health of your brain is really important and it’s good to have a day to really think about things. I’m going to start challenging myself to improve my self-esteem”. Another student said, “I learned some shocking facts about the effects of drugs and alcohol on the brain. I’d rather have a cup of tea!”

Industry Guest – Danielle Walters

March 23, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Education, Drama

Drama learners at our Academy got the chance to meet Actress Danielle Walters, known from her role playing Candice in the E4 hit show ‘Chewing Gum‘ and her husband Ashley Walters, otherwise known as ‘Asher D’ who was an avid member of So Solid Crew as well as an Actor who has appeared in Top Boy, Bullet Boy, Anuvahood and more. During the morning of the visit, drama learners worked in groups to prepare a short piece to perform to the guests when they arrive later that day. Learners worked quickly and effectively to write, choreograph and rehearse their performance just in time for 15:30 when Danielle and Asher arrived at our campus. The session kicked off with the group performances followed by valuable feedback from Danielle and Asher on their pieces. The visit was rounded off with a Q&A where learners got the chance to quiz the pair on their experiences in the industry, how they obtained their acting opportunities and their future goals.

E4 Chewing Gum performing arts course

Industry Guest – Rambi Murufu

March 8, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Academy

Entrepreneur and Wellbeing Specialist Rambi Marufu visited our Academy enterprise learners and provided a background on her personal journey and inspiration behind her brand, Tirivamwe. She describes her brand as a blend of fashion, culture and identity, focusing on head wraps as an expression of womanhood, sisterhood empowerment.

During her talk she gave context on the history and symbolism of the head wrap touching on the cultural, religious and spiritual aspects as well as its relevance in today’s world. She completed her talk by giving our young learners a chance to try out some head wraps and concluding her visit with insight on what has helped her to be successful as an entrepreneur such as the importance of goal setting and building a network of trusted people that you can seek guidance and sound advice from.


Industry Guest – Ira Dubinksy

March 7, 2017 - Posted By in Big Creative Apprenticeships, Big Creative Education

Level 3 Digital Marketing and Live Events apprentices were treated to an insightful peek at how retailer Marks & Spencer developed their heart-warming 2016 Christmas advert campaign by the head of Marketing and Christmas, Ira Dubinsky.

Ira contacted BCE himself, having passed by the buildings constantly on his route to work and being naturally curious, decided to reach out to us, wondering if he could share some of the things he’s learned. Ira began his presentation with an ice-breaker showing the class a funny advert from Brahma Beer which helped set the tone of his marketing philosophy; you should always be ahead of the competition and your creative ideas should reflect that. With the atmosphere set, Ira gave learners a brief summary of his background. He started off making websites for clients in his native Canada at sixteen with a few friends, which evolved into a small business that he later sold. Buoyed from this humble success, he later took a position at the Adobe Canadas head office in Ontario. From the years of experience gained, he went on to study an MBA (Master of Business Administration) at London Business School which gave him the knowledge to land a prestigious position at M&S.

Before showing the Christmas advert, Ira stressed the importance of Christmas, not only in terms of Sales growth but also how unique it is to Britain. For example, we know that all of the public transport systems are shut down on Christmas Day, but to Ira this was perplexing as nowhere else he knew of in the world did this! Ira then presented the three minute advert which left the room highly impressed at the film-like quality and its touching narrative.

Ira later went on to explain how the concept of Mrs Claus was created by the advertising agency by looking at trends in customer data, listening to focus groups and generally switching their approach from a logical, sales driven campaign to one that had much more emotion that would connect with an audience. They were working with and how they not only created the advert, but also grew the character of Mrs Claus into an ambassador for M&S over the Christmas period. They created a custom Twitter emoji, promoted the iconic red dress she wore in the advert, and had a live Q&A Twitter and Facebook presence. All of this accumulated into widespread positive press in national newspapers, a top trending rank on Twitter and the biggest sales M&S had seen in six years.

Needless to say, it was a huge success for Ira’s team and we were blown away the scale and the detail they used to help create such a broad campaign and we all look forward to what M&S will put out for Christmas 2017.

Take a peek at the 2016 Marks and Spencer Christmas ad ‘Mrs Claus’ below!