Mon | Oct 2, 2023

More animators needed in Jamaica - Maitland

Published:Tuesday | November 20, 2018 | 12:00 AM

With the value of the global animation industry now at an estimated US$254 billion and projected to reach US$270 billion by the end of 2020, senior lecturer and programme director of animation, production and development at the University of Technology (UTech), Nadine Maitland, is encouraging students to pursue a Bachelor's degree in animation at the institution.

She noted that UTech's brand is recognised and sought after based on its history of preparing technically and technologically sound work-ready graduates.

"The university has been deliberate in its efforts to offer programmes that are meaningful and relevant to the development of entrepreneurs and professionals to provide a training platform that allows students to develop the competence and acquire the requisite skills required by employers," she said in a release.

Maitland said that with little more than 50 animators in Jamaica, there is an immediate need for an estimated 200 persons with animation skills at this time. "If Jamaica is to capitalise on the opportunities that will arise from this emerging industry, there must be deliberate efforts in the training of its people."

The School of Computing and Information Technology at UTech began offering the Bachelor of science degree in animation production and development (BSc APD) in August 2014 with a cohort of 25 students. Since then, the programme has grown significantly, resulting in UTech being the leading institution with respect to animation training at the tertiary level, with 135 students enrolled in its BSc APD programme over four years.

In 2013, the World Bank, in conjunction with the Government, launched the Animate Jamaica Project in an effort to secure a share of the global animation industry.

The Youth Employment in the Digital and Animation Industries Project, implemented by the Ministry of Science, Energy

and Technology, has provided assistance to all academic institutions that are offering animation training by providing resources (hardware and software) and training with the aim of equipping animators to participate effectively in the global animation and digital industries.