Imperial College London

A commercial encouraging more female applicants to study at Imperial

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#HerImperial: Our award-wining campaign for one of the world’s leading STEM universities.


In the UK today, around 86% of undergraduate students in Engineering and Technology are men. Imperial College London are working hard to attract young women with an interest in STEM subjects and wants to inspire them to follow their passion at degree level. Contra teamed up with Imperial to develop a video campaign, to run on the university’s website and social channels, which celebrated the innovative work already being done by female students and graduates. 

Rather than directly focussing on the gender issue in STEM subjects, we decided it would be far more compelling to follow three inspiring women out in the field, getting stuck into their work, and letting their stories speak for themselves. The shoot took us to three countries: capturing a Geology student on a field trip in The Pyrenees; a Biomedical Engineer making prosthetics in Iceland; and a PhD student working in the Hydrodynamics Lab on campus.

Furthermore, we chose the music track ‘Salute’ by Little Mix to grab the attention of our young female target audience. The band – known for their empowering pop music – and their record label (Universal Music) have thrown their support behind this worthwhile cause. 

Making the most of our client’s footage.

To accompany the main film, we produced three short documentaries, allowing the audience to dive into the stories in more detail. The audio-only interviews, which partner extended scenes from the main film, give the viewer more insight on how the women became interested in their respective areas of study, how Imperial has enabled them to realise their potential, and – in the case of our graduate subject Hildur Einarsdottir – become leaders in their field. 

The awards roll in.

Whilst the true measure of success for this campaign will be an increase in female applicants to STEM subjects at Imperial, it’s nevertheless an honour for the films to be recognised by the filmmaking industry. At this years’ prestigious EVCOM Screen Awards #HerImperial picked up three awards, including Best Marketing and Recruitment Film. 

Our client was thrilled:

“Hands down the best HE video I’ve ever seen. By some distance. Incredible work all round.” Jon Ashton, Marketing Executive, Imperial College London

So if you’re looking for a highly creative production company for your next recruitment campaign, please do get in touch.

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