Weber Shandwick and University of Salford launch industry-first partnership 

Weber Shandwick has partnered with the University of Salford’s journalism department to launch an industry first scheme which will see the latest industry insights and practices embedded into the University’s curriculum, and trainee placements held exclusively for Salford students.

Launching this Autumn, the Earned Media Graduate Scheme sees three students from the University join Weber Shandwick’s Manchester office, where they will join the agency in working with several national and global brands on earned media strategies and activations.


Weber Shandwick’s Manchester-based PR practitioners will work collaboratively with academics at the University of Salford to build the latest ‘real world’ insights and techniques from the industry into the BA Journalism with Public Relations course, and the PR module taught across other BA Journalism courses.


As well as supporting with shaping the course to reflect the current industry landscape, Weber Shandwick’s Manchester office will deliver a series of guest lectures, professional workshops, and support the department’s employability offering by upskilling students in priority areas for employers across the industry.


Following their graduation from the University this summer, Adam Gooseman, Em Shaw and Eva Shana are the first to join the agency as part of the scheme’s first cohort. Each will support Weber Shandwick’s corporate and consumer teams over the coming twelve months, bringing in their in-depth understanding of the UK media landscape and first-hand experience of working in newsrooms.


Katie Hill, Executive Vice President for Earned Media at Weber Shandwick said: “Based in the heart of MediaCityUK, the University of Salford is widely recognised as one of the most prestigious and established media and creative training centres in the UK, making it the ideal partner for us as we continue to explore ways to attract the strongest talent in earned media and explore new routes into PR for those at the beginning of their careers.


“Our industry is at a pivotal moment and as we continue through the Era of Earned, it’s crucial that we continue to develop and nurture earned media talent at all levels in order to future proof our business. We are so excited to welcome our first cohort of entry level talent from the partnership to the agency and I’m confident that they will be valuable additions to their respective teams, bringing fresh thinking to their accounts and a depth of media knowledge thanks to their learning experience at Salford.”


Sara Eyre, Programme Leader for BA Journalism at the University of Salford said: “We are very excited to be working with Weber Shandwick on this fantastic opportunity for our students and the University. The partnership will help to ensure that our journalism courses continue to reflect industry practice and prepare our students for future careers in areas like PR and comms.


“Enhancing graduate employability and establishing strong links with organisations like Weber Shandwick is something that we pride ourselves on at Salford, and this collaboration will enable us to further strengthen this aspect of the student experience. We are very excited about this collaboration and have no doubt that Adam, Em and Eva will make a great impact as the first trainees on the scheme.”


The launch of this industry first partnership follows several initiatives developed by Weber Shandwick this year as it continues to explore new routes into PR as part of its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan, including a partnership with Creative Access, a leading diversity, equity and inclusion social enterprise, to improve access to the communications industry for individuals from groups under-represented in the sector.