Manchester digital agency launches 'The Institute of Computerlove'
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Having been outspoken about his 'disappointment' in the education system's digital offering and lack of courses in the region to feed the digital industries, managing director of Code Computerlove Tony Foggett has put his money where his mouth is and created 'The Institute of Computerlove' to foster new digital talent.

The Institute of Computerlove is a mentoring and continual programme of development for design students during their final year at university or college (year two for foundation degree). Code has already taken on five students from Salford University (just outside Manchester) currently being mentored by the design team, and is looking for new recruits for the next school year's intake.

Tony Foggett said: "The exchange is, Code gives students feedback and advice on their final year projects, provides work experience and offers career coaching to ready them for employment. In return we get to see the best talent around and encourage students to get into digital marketing for agencies in the North West. The scheme will also give us personal satisfaction if our little prodigies go on to do great things!
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Each student picked for the scheme is assigned a mentor from Code's design team, headed by Wini Tse, who will provide face to face, email or telephone support and reviews - at least two hours bimonthly. Code also funds attendance to all of the Manchester D&AD presidents lectures, any entry fees into competitions or awards, plus other industry events that would benefit student's knowledge.

Students also benefit from two weeks' work experience within the agency, plus part-time work throughout the year as applicable; they have access to Code's industry leading research libraries, online training, software know-how and other training events; and of course they get to be included in some top agency nights out to see just what working for a digital marketing agency is all about.

Tony Foggett added: "The digital industry has a real need for experience and talented people to feed its massive growth, and it's even more acute in the North West. So we wanted to do our bit to encourage young creatives into digital marketing. It's difficult enough for 'the industry' to keep up with ever evolving advancements and the fast technological changes, but for educational establishments it's a massive
challenge as well. The more we can do to support it the better.

"We are doing this because we want to lead the way and support the educational establishments, with whom we already work closely, to develop the talent of the future. We want the North West to continue to grow as a digital city and be recognised as a leading light in the UK for everything new media, but we have to invest in our future.

"Manchester's Higher Education bodies have not kept up with planning for the digital industry. The cogs have started to turn to improve schooling for digital talent, and Salford has now got a much needed digital course. But there's still more to be done. Agencies need to take action and help develop the talent in the region before it's too late. As a region we also have to work harder than London, and other marketing industries, to attract, train and retain talent.

"We know we might not be able give everyone who passes through our doors a job, but hopefully we will develop a network of talented young designers who we can keep within the region and improved their chance of getting one with some of our friends. We have a great network within Manchester and throughout the UK, and would see it as a personal failure if our students didn't go on to get a job at the end of the year."

Anyone interested in joining The Institute of Computerlove should email wini.tse@codecomputerlove.com

Code is also recruiting for experienced staff across all areas of it business. For more information email info@codecomputerlove.com

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NOTES TO EDITORS:

Code already works with Skillset North, North West Vision & Media, Salford University, City College, Stockport College, Manchester Metropolitan University and Manchester Business School.

Tony Foggett sits on the board of Skillset North's Industry panel and teaches on the foundation course at Salford City College.

Code offers comprehensive on-the-job training to all staff - from in-house classes to IPA exams.

Code Computerlove (www.codecomputerlove.com <http://www.codecomputerlove.com/&gt; ) is a full service digital marketing agency offering website design and build, and online media and marketing services. Formed in 1999, Code currently employs 46 people at its offices in central Manchester. Code's client list includes HMV, Waterstone's, Kimberly Clark Corporation, PZ Cussons, Crown, Lex, Epson, First Transpennine Express, Premier Foods, NUS and Hillarys.

Over the last five years, Code has won more than 40 industry awards - most recently:

* Revolution Awards 2008 Best Retail Site - HMV

* Highest Digital Agency Ranking for ROI (and 8th Top UK Agency)
- Revolution Magazine's client poll

* NW Digital Agency of the Year 2007 - The Drum New Years
Honours

* Digital Agency of Year 2007 - Fresh Digital

* Digital Agency of Year 2007 - Big Chips

* Revolution Awards Best Retail Site 2007 - Hillarys web-blinds

* Fresh Creative Best B2B Site 2007 - moodboard

* Fresh Creative Best Consumer Site 2007 - Bisto (silver)

* Fresh Digital Best Online Retail Site 2007 - HMV

* Webcredible Most Usable Website 2007 - HMV

Published on: 12:00AM on 8th April 2008