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Saatchi success for three LUMS graduates

Ben Dancer, Kim van Heerden and Jed Price outside Saatchi's London offices

27 November 2014

Three recent LUMS graduates have been recruited by renowned global advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi.

Of the six graduates offered roles after completing the company’s Summer Academy, three are from LUMS: Ben Dancer and Kim van Heerden from the BSc Marketing Management, and Jed Price who studied BA Advertising and Marketing.

The three gained places on Saatchi’s Summer Academy after a competitive selection process which involved interviews at both LUMS and Saatchi’s London office. From around 100 initial applicants, 36 were interviewed for a place on the Academy and 11 were successful.

The programme – eight weeks at the agency’s London office – is aimed at the next generation of account managers and planners and offers interns direct exposure to clients. The Summer Academy participants were able to build relationships with colleagues and also gain an understanding of the agency’s working culture. A highlight was the Saatchi summer party where the three graduates networked with employees from across the business.

Reflecting on his experience, Ben said: “The Summer Academy was a top experience for me. The ‘Nothing Is Impossible’ mantra at Saatchi is something that is truly lived and breathed within the walls of our building at Charlotte Street, creating an exciting working atmosphere. One of the best things about the Academy was gaining exposure to different areas of the business and I think soaking up knowledge from people in all of these areas contributed to securing a position after the Academy.”

Commenting on how the programme at LUMS helped her achieve success, Kim said: “In one of the modules there was a simulation activity where I essentially took on the role of a Marketing Manager. I had to allocate resources according to budget, and write a report every week for presenting to the board. We were really coached on our presentation skills, as these skills are essential in advertising and marketing careers. The careers department was also fantastic at helping me prepare for the Saatchi interview.”

Jed added: “Working for Saatchi & Saatchi has been a goal I’ve had for as long as I can remember, so I was delighted when the opportunity arose. The academy itself was fantastic fun and gave me the best career experience I could have asked for. Coming through LUMS gave me a great platform of skills to keep my head above water in the very fast-paced world of advertising, and all three of us then securing permanent jobs here is a pretty good indicator of how good Lancaster University Management School is.” 

Saatchi & Saatchi has a longstanding relationship with LUMS, and insights from the agency feed into a number of the School’s programmes, including Masters programmes in Marketing and the Lancaster MBA.

Earlier this year Saatchi’s Global CEO Kevin Roberts delivered a lecture to a group of 40 undergraduate students. There are also currently two groups of BA Advertising and Marketing undergraduate students working on a live brief which will be presented to Saatchi & Saatchi next term.