4As formalises engagement programme for Media & Communications students at tertiary institutions to promote talent development

The Association of Accredited Advertising Agents Malaysia (4As) has announced the launch of “The Refinery”, a student talent development programme designed with the goal of shaping the next generation of ad-makers who will one day be the trailblazers of the industry.

With a series of activities lined up starting from September 2023, The Refinery will be the gateway for aspiring advertising professionals to join some of the most reputable and prestigious creative agencies in Malaysia.

Clarence Koh, CEO of Naga DDB Tribal, and 4As Council Member said, “Taking a holistic view of the industry, the 4As has seen that students entering the Agencies after university often face a steep learning curve, and have to make big adjustments to life in the workforce.

This can be time consuming and cost inefficient for the new employees and Agencies respectively. Even worse, it can sometimes result in dimming the sparkle of the motivated and passionate students entering the workforce.”

“One of the key objectives of the 4As is to foster continuous professional development for the attraction and retention of Agency talent. We want students to increase their passion and motivation, and invite them to see first-hand the work that we do, how we alter perceptions and behaviour, how we create more impactful and effective work that delivers better business results,” Koh added.

The Refinery is comprised of a raft of programmes including the following:

  • Agency Open Days – an office visit at a 4As Agency for students and lecturers.
  • Guest Lectures – a guest lecture on campus by a prominent 4As practitioner.
  • The Refinery Masterclass – a hybrid of in person activities and online video vault over an extended timeframe.
  • The Refinery Bootcamp – a half or full day hands on activity for students to work on an actual client brief.
  • Internships – working with local leading universities to provide placements at 4As agencies for up to 200 students.

The 4As is engaging with leading universities in Malaysia to sign up for these activities through The Refinery.

Khairudin Rahim, 4As CEO said, “This programme is a formal outreach to universities to better prepare their students for careers in advertising.”

“In previous years, internships for students, agency visits, or guest lectures at the universities have been conducted on a mostly ad-hoc basis. The Refinery by the 4As puts a framework on these activities, which allows Agency leaders to allocate their time accordingly, while giving students access to internships at leading Agencies in Malaysia.”

We are aiming to improve the entire experience for all the stakeholders involved, the Agencies, the universities, and especially the students who are the future of the industry,” Khairudin concluded.


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