#Announcement #TYNinjas #Transition Year
For the fourth year in a row, the TY Ninjas Programme will be running from February to May this year. The TY Ninjas Programme is an initiative to cultivate a platform for transition year students by transition year students. Since its inception in 2019, the programme has been run online with a small group of budding student writers and designers from across Ireland.
The first year we ran the programme, we were really unsure of one, how to run the programme and two, if students would even like it! The TY.ie Team at the time were all just starting college (and now finishing this year!), not much older than the TY students we were intending to teach. We wondered if we were in the position to teach TY students anything. But we had a unique platform and wanted to offer something different to students who would make the most of it. Each year we are constantly surprised and delighted by the feedback we receive from running the programme. We were running the programme for the first time when the pandemic hit. While many TY Programmes and work experience opportunities were affected, we were able to continue running, due to it being coordinated online, offering participating students a unique and worthwhile work experience opportunity.
A Unique Experience
There are lot of things that make the programme unique, from the length of the programme giving students months of experience rather than just two weeks, and its free structure where it’s really up to the students to do what they want to do, when they want to do it. TY.ie simply provides the platform and exposure for their creativity. There is no set schedule, not set work, we just suggest projects and briefs that students can choose to do or do their own idea instead. Either way, they are rewarded for their work with monthly raffles some of which are sponsored by local businesses.
There are three kinds of TY Ninjas: Writers, designers and those who choose to do both! Writers can write about anything that interests them, we don’t limit the topics to transition year. Designers, create graphics for articles and our social media that are often based on a given brief however they also have the freedom to create designs of their own and publish them. Every TY Ninjas submission is given feedback where students can learn and improve with each subsequent submission. As well as this, various resources are given to students throughout the programme to help them in their learning.
The process of selecting TY Ninjas is quite simple. Obviously, there is no requirement for previous experience but we do like students who show some interest in writing or design in their application and also look for students that show personal initiative to explore interests by themselves. We usually select around 10 – 12 students but this year due to college demands, we will likely be selecting a smaller group.
The aim of the TY Ninjas Programme is really to help students answer the question, “What might it be like to be a writer?” or “What’s it like to be a designer?”. These are the kind of questions we think transition year should pose to students but also help them to answer. It’s a difficult thing to try to choose a career at such a young age, there are many possibilities but arguably little exposure to them in our education system. The transition year aims to help with this which is why it can be a pivoting, exciting and opportune time for students. Initiatives like TY.ie itself, and the TY Ninjas Programme are here to augment the year, to help students get the best experience out of it.
TY Ninjas Programme Coordinator