Final year diploma and degree students with a specialisation in Strategic Communication at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) have received sponsorship through an education initiative of South Africa’s media agency collective, the Advertising Media Forum (AMF).
The initiative called Future-Fit aims to provide the next generation of media strategists and planners with a practical foothold into the industry.
The support being given to these strategically strong students comprises payment of the balance of each student’s fees for their final year of studies and the opportunity to conduct a one-year internship at one of the country’s media agencies.
“Our 2019/20 investment is geared to enable the near graduates not only to complete their studies but to gain valuable in-agency experience to kick start their careers,” says Koo Govender, Chairperson of the AMF.
Gratitude for those giving back
“We have many people to thank for helping us bring this first chapter of the AMF’s Future-Fit to life,” she says. Whilst it was steered by MD of MediaShop – JHB, Kgaugelo Maphai and driven through the non-profit’s Education and Training Board Committee, it was made possible by collaboration in the media and agency community.
29% of the funding was donated by media and public relations leader, Sandra Gordon. A further 25% took the form of a donation from the wife of the late Gordon Patterson, a media role model and leader of the AMF in his distinguished Media career.
The balance of the funding was provided by the AMF as made possible through membership fees.
"Partnering with industry to assist committed and deserving students is a winning formula. UJ is proud of its Strategic Communication students and grateful of the support AMF offered in ensuring that several students could pay off their outstanding fees and graduate," says Dr Rene Benecke, senior lecturer in the Department of Strategic Communication.
Govender extends the note of gratitude to the industry for such collaboration, saying, “Together with our reputable media agency members, our two generous contributors have enabled us to start to give students the fast track into our fast pace world of media strategy, planning and buying.”
Media growth mandate of AMF
The AMF wants to make a sustainable impact in business, she adds. This includes making a positive contribution to how media is viewed to enabling the sector to have a good influence in society. Key to this, she believes is the AMF’s drive to futureproof media agencies.
The AMF is deeply committed to recruiting previously disadvantaged students and helping them by funding their studies, as well as giving them much needed on the job experience so that they have are able to contribute to and grow the media industry.
“To enable companies to thrive into the future, we collectively need the next generation of mathematically-minded individuals – critical and creative thinkers - to enter and embrace working in agencies. They are our next generation of leaders,” concludes Govender.
About the AMF
The Advertising Media Forum (AMF) is a collective of media agencies and individuals including media strategists, planners, buyers and consultants through whom 95% of all media expenditure in South Africa is bought. The AMF advises and represents relevant organisations and aims to create open channels of communication and encourage and support transparent policies, strategies and transactions within the industry.
For more information on the AMF, visit amf.org.za.