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IAA UK’s PAC’20 goes virtual to inspire the next generation of industry leaders

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Often nicknamed “The University of Advertising” and widely acknowledged as an annual highlight in the UK-based international media industry, the PAC’20 training course – run by the International Advertising Association UK (IAA UK) – will take place as a virtual event this year, with applications for tickets now open.

Designed for rising talent in the advertising world, the aim of PAC is to stimulate debate, discussion and communication, giving participants a greater understanding of the advertising process – from the client, agency and media owner perspective. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 event has been moved online from its usual location at Oxford University, but it still promises to offer the same valuable training experience. 

This year the IAA UK’s Young Professionals Committee will host the bespoke and interactive event through a series of afternoon sessions from 2:30pm-5:00pm on Wednesday 23rd September, Thursday 24th September, Wednesday 30th September, and Thursday 1st October. These sessions aim to deliver all of the very best elements of PAC online; participants can expect thought-provoking talks and discussions on current topics, a creative challenge, a mini mock brief, career guidance, mentoring and networking.

As always, IAA UK will be gathering some of the brightest and best from across the industry with involvement from large brands such as CNN, LinkedIn and DoubleVerify. Providing meaningful opportunities for professional development is core to the IAA’s mission: PAC’20 is designed to support, guide and inspire the next generation of industry leaders – with a focus on the importance of diversity – irrespective of experience, background or current circumstance. This is particularly pertinent this year with reports suggesting young people are more likely to lose work as a result of COVID-19. 

Tickets can be purchased from Eventbrite by individuals or companies. Mindful of reductions in training budgets, IAA UK has devised a number of low-cost payment options and is also asking industry leaders who would like to give back and support upcoming talent to fund delegate places in a Pay It Forward initiative, for those who are unable to fund themselves. 

To participate in funding a place, follow the Eventbrite ticket purchase process and at check-out select “Pay It Forward” along with the number of tickets to be donated. You can choose to Pay It Forward to someone specific – the super star account manager who deserves recognition for their commitment to career growth or the recent graduate that you know is struggling to find the right opportunity to shine. Alternatively, you can choose to fund anonymous places, which will go into the pool for PAC’20 applicants who are currently experiencing financial difficulties and are either furloughed, self-employed, unemployed or a student. 

To apply for these funded places, hopeful applicants will need to explain in no more than 100 words here why they would be a great delegate and how they would use the experience to advance their career development. Applicants will be selected according to IAA criteria  and will need to commit to participation in all course sessions. IAA UK will then supply successful applicants with an Eventbrite access code. Additionally, two places at PAC’20 are reserved for Brixton Finishing School graduates. 

All companies and individuals participating in the Pay It Forward scheme will be given recognition as a supporter of PAC’20.