It started almost a year ago, when 30 promising, young and hungry people from previously disadvantaged backgrounds were chosen to take part in the first advertising certificate course run by Red & Yellow School in Johannesburg.
The first course run by the advertising and marketing college took place at the institution’s main campus in Cape Town in 2015.
Chosen from some 3 000 applicants, the 30 students were given a chance to prove themselves and become part of the future of South Africa’s marketing and advertising industry through the Red &Yellow Springboard Marketing Institute (RYSMI).
The RYSMI learnership involves six months of training at the school, after which the students are placed in various companies in the industry for a further six months. There they get on-the-job experience and training, giving them a proper taste of life in advertising and marketing.
Today, almost a year later, the students are in their last days of their course and their time at their respective companies and agencies. When their learnerships do end, the students will go back to Red & Yellow, where they will prepare to write their final exams.
Putting on paper what they learned in the classroom and in the industry, this last step will reveal whether they have what it takes to break into the sector successfully.
Red and Yellow’s mission is to counter the increasing income gap by arming underprivileged people with the knowledge and skills they need to compete with their affluent counterparts on even ground. This is done through facilitating this learnership.
A PERSONAL ACCOUNT
Matome Malatji, one of the 30 students, was placed at Avatar Agency. Speaking of his experiences over the better part of the last six months, he said: “At Avatar Agency, for the first time, I was in a place where I understood people and they understood me right back.
“At Avatar I learned about the agency and the industry as a whole; how the departments and the different people and personalities in those departments worked as a unit. This experience helped me put all that I had learned during the first six months of the learnership into practice.”
His time at the agency gave him a chance to get to grips with what exactly went on in the day-to-day running of an agency and how individual agencies existed in the competitive field of advertising.
“Everybody wants to be heard. With the hands-on experience I had at Avatar and the lessons I was taught at Red & Yellow, I believe I have found my voice to have my say in this ever-changing industry, which has its own culture and lifestyle.”
Commenting on what it took to be successful in advertising and marketing, Malatji said that “most importantly it is centred on how you think. I will carry with me everything I have learned and my now not-so-little black book.”
The Red & Yellow certificate course accepts a new group of ambitious students each year to continue the school’s search for promising talent and those who will help to take the South African advertising and marketing industry to new heights.
“All’s well that ends well,” said Malatji. “You never know what you’re capable of until you try.”