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Ladders Case Studies || Penny Day

My name is Penny Day and from tomorrow onwards I will be an Innovation Officer at Digital Catapult. I took part in the Film and Television course that was run by Ladders.

So, when did your interest in Film/TV flourish?

I have always loved writing and for a few years I thought my interest had always been within writing novels, however, as my love for films and television grew as did my passion for script and screenwriting. I have always enjoyed having a creative outlet, I think it’s a really important way to create a positive headspace. Unfortunately, I was never really pushed to do anything particularly creative at school, the school that I went to was very focussed on academia. However, when I came to university and took on a media module in film and television I realised it was something I could really be interested in.

How did you find out about Ladders?

A friend of mine had taken part in the Ladders Music course and after I had graduated from University, I felt quite lost with what I wanted to do with my life so he suggested I went along to Ladders. I was quite nervous about applying, I had no background in film or television I just knew that it was something I was interested in. The idea of walking into a room full of strangers from a mixture of backgrounds can be quite daunting but I’m so pleased I did it.

What was the Ladders experience like for you?

I loved everything about the Ladders course. It really covered all bases, it allowed me to see how creativity doesn’t just have to be something you put into your spare time but you can actually make a living out of it too. I particularly enjoyed the industry visits that we took part in during the second week of the course. It was amazing to see just how much there is out there, I was particularly surprised to see how many creative workspaces there are within the northeast.

What was it like working with Chloe alongside other special guests who you met along the way? 

Chloe was fantastic. She was always there to help and give guidance, you never felt too scared to ask any questions. I also loved listening to Rebecca Innes talk about her screenwriting in our final session, it was very inspiring to see how she had made a profession out of her storytelling and the precise science that goes on behind it. It was also great meeting Jenny Lang over at Proto, she really opened my eyes and showed me another side to the tech industry that I didn’t even know existed.

Now tell us about your current occupation/study?

Tomorrow is actually my first day at my new job which I would never have got if I hadn’t attended the Ladders programme. During our industry visits, we went to a workspace in Gateshead called Proto where we met Jenny Lang from Digital Catapult, after speaking to Jenny for a while about the implications of Virtual Reality we exchanged details and kept in touch. In January, Jenny emailed me to let me know that they had two job roles at Digital Catapult coming up that I should apply for and somehow I managed to bag myself one of the roles! My role will be to help digital catapult oversee innovation projects within the North East and assist in educating the wider business community on the advantages of adopting new technologies.

The industry you have chosen – are you excited about what’s to come? Particularly in Newcastle? What are your current hopes and aspirations moving forward?

I think the world of tech will forever be an exciting industry to be a part of, particularly within the North East. For me, I’m very interested in the ever-increasing ways virtual reality and augmented reality can be implemented within the day to day life. I studied Psychology with Media and Communications at University and one thing that I do find fascinating and something that is currently being looked into is how Virtual Reality can be used within the world of psychology. In the future, I would love to play a part in the ongoing research that is going harnessing the benefits of VR to help people with mental health issues.

Would you recommend Ladders to others and if so, why? 

I would definitely recommend Ladders! For me, the course came at the perfect time, it almost felt as though everything completely fell into place. I had no idea that I would even be interested in a career in tech before I attended the course. I think Ladders is an amazing way to show you your true potential. It allows you to be creative, meet relevant professionals within the industry that could open doors for you, you also meet people who have similar interests as you and it can completely pave the way for a brand-new chapter of your life.

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