The Forces Media Academy has today been opened by HRH The Duke of York.
During his official visit, he met the 15 service leavers who have been selected to train for future careers in the media at the Academy.
The one-year free course will provide its students with a Higher National Certificate in Creative Media Production.
The Academy is located at the headquarters of the Services Sound and Vision Corporation (SSVC), in Buckinghamshire, home to Forces TV and the British Forces Broadcasting Service (BFBS).
Prince Andrew is the patron of SSVC and officially opened the Forces Media Academy.
He said of the Academy:
“To provide a course like this, for either retiring or leaving veteran service personnel, is absolutely second-to-none.
There are a number of media organisations in this country, who are looking for additional skills.
They are looking for core skills of resilience, the ability to be able to deliver work unsupervised and to be able to get on with things in a way that the servicemen and women can do.”
Its 15 students will be learning core skills needed for a career in the media, including radio, TV and digital production.
The Duke met students and toured the facilities, which include a green screen studio and a modern, digital-based classroom, before unveiling a plaque to declare the Academy officially open.
The Duke was also interviewed by Forces Media Academy student, Sophie Maynard, a former Royal Navy Warfare Officer.
The students attending the academy have a range of backgrounds and skills and have all served in the Army, Royal Navy and RAF – two are still reservists.
The class includes musician Poppy Pawsey who was discharged from the Royal Marines after becoming injured.
She’s a jazz singer, who has appeared at the Royal Albert Hall.
She also competed in the Invictus Games in archery and swimming and was mentored by Prince Harry.
She won a bronze medal in the 100 metres, and now wants to retrain as a video journalist.
Now the Academy has the Royal seal of approval, its work can begin with a new focus on the future.