The first apprenticeship standard aimed specifically at publishing has been launched, aiming to drive social mobility across the industry.
A string of firms have already agreed to take on the first cohort of publishing assistant apprentices from September, including Bloomsbury, Cambridge University Press, DK, Pearson, Penguin Random House and Springer Nature.
Training will be provided by LDN Apprenticeships in a 15-month programme adaptable to each publisher’s needs and covering key skills from conception to production. Combining training in a paid job alongside study, they are intended to open up traditionally degree-dominated careers to school leavers.
Developed with help from charity Creative & Cultural Skills, the initiative was spearheaded by the Publishers Association (PA) and a group of employers.
Emma House, deputy c.e.o of the PA, said: “Apprenticeships are a fantastic mechanism for driving social mobility in our industry, and we are proud of our work to deliver the first ever publishing-specific apprenticeship standard. It is hugely encouraging to see publishers embracing this idea and we hope many more will follow.
“We would like to thank the trailblazer employer group, whose support and high-quality work has resulted in a standard which we hope will be a game-changer for apprenticeships in publishing.”
Simon Bozzoli, c.e.o of LDN Apprenticeships, said the move would be “life-changing” for those taking part, helping young people to find meaningful careers in jobs they love. He said: “I hope that, with our help, they will be the beginning of an apprenticeship movement in the world of publishing.”
Peter Phillips, PA president and c.e.o of Cambridge University Press, hailed the move as an important step in opening up the industry. He said: “This is a key part of the PA’s work to support publishers in opening up careers and providing opportunities to a wider group of people. That’s something I have already seen generate real successes in Cambridge University Press.”