The inaugural Industry/Student forum, organised by Advertising Lecturer, David Reid, provided advertising students the opportunity to listen, ask questions, and network with people currently working in the Advertising industry.

Following an address from the Keynote Speaker, Shachar Meron, Lecturer in Advertising at the University of Illinois, the panel shared their experience of entering the industry and talked about the opportunities available for new graduates.

The panel comprised a mix of industry executives and recent graduates. Industry executives were Elijah Harris, Social Media Director at SOCiETY; Luke Marshall, Client Partner, Facebook; and Ben Shapira, a digital marketing consultant. Recent Advertising graduates were Delwin Lim, Media Assistant, Maxus; Mel Priestley, Account Coordinator, Zenith Optimedia; and Jade Khoo, Project & Events officer with Swinburne. Professor Jacqueline Hitchon visiting from University of Illinois provided the USA perspective. Hearing from both industry executives with experience in various roles and new graduates for whom the transition from university to work is just yesterday provides current students with a better understanding of what the industry offers.

The second panel focussed on the pathways into agency work, including paid and unpaid internships, and graduate programmes. HR and Talent managers Janette McMaster, Manon Pietra, and Kim Lion all agreed that students need to be being persistent about applying for roles and that recruiters look for people who are open and curious about the world and people, have a passion for advertising, and, of course, a university degree. Also on the panel was Suzy Leys from the Communications Council who talked about the value of attending networking nights, completing short courses and having a portfolio of work to show prospective employers.

Both second and final-year students attended, asking interesting questions of both panels and using the half hour after the event to find out more information and network with the panellists.