Westminster Skills Club has introduced its first Film Summer School workshop for budding filmmakers aged 16–17 years old.

On 24 July, 16 pupils attended the five-day film workshop, which took place at the University of Westminster’s Media, Arts and Design campus in Harrow.

Each day of the workshop focused on different skills required in the filmmaking industry, including script writing, shooting scenes and editing. The students were asked in advance to prepare some ideas in groups for their short films, using simple locations on campus including classrooms and the canteen.

The films focused on different genres and topics, including a comedy thriller surrounding a robbery gone wrong and a drama about social media and the societal effects. The students finalised their films and watched the screening in the auditorium on the last day.

The film workshop is included in a series of skills based sessions across a range of subjects designed to enhance their knowledge of that subject in a university setting. This has included other clubs such as Coding Club, Radio Production Club and Study Skills Club which encourages development in public speaking, leadership and networking skills. The clubs also involved working with staff and current students at the University of Westminster and learning more about higher education.

Sarah-Jane Harrison, Film Production Technician at University of Westminster, said: “We decided to run this workshop for the first time this year to show young people what studying film is like at university. The students came up with really great ideas. I’m really impressed with the standard of work.”

Pupils from the following schools took part in the event: Bullers Wood School, St Anne’s Catholic High School, Harlington School Waldegrave Sixth form, Tiffin Girls’ School, Thomas Tallis School, St Angela’s Ursuline Sixth form, Richard Challoner School, Harrow College, The Holy Cross School, Reigate College, and Queensmead High School.

A student from Bullers Wood School for Girls said: “The film workshop provided us with the opportunity to try different roles and learn skills that we can even use in the future. I’ve learnt a lot in a short amount of time and I really enjoyed it. I definitely want a career in film.”

The Westminster Skills Club series is funded by the Quintin Hogg Trust  and is run by the University of Westminster’s Outreach Team who support activities linking local and national schools with the University. 

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