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Cambridge City Council

Cambridge young people encouraged to join work experience programmes online and in person

24 March 2023

FROM 10 TO 14 July Cambridge City Council will run a free work experience week for Cambridge young people in Years 12 and 13 with a focus on careers linked to the arts and culture.

The event is organised by the council’s My Cambridge local cultural education partnership, working with national charity Social Mobility Business Partnership (SMBP), which runs similar weeks nationally each summer and is also running an online-only week from 10 to 14 April with a broader focus.

The programmes provide an opportunity to develop key skills employers look for when recruiting, to learn from four high profile businesses, and to boost confidence and motivation.

To be eligible, applicants will need to be in Years 12 and 13 (aged 16 to 18) and have attended a state school; and be the first generation in their family planning to attend university, or have been eligible for free school meals in the last six years, or be from a low-income household.

The Cambridge week in July has a particular focus on creativity in order to increase young people’s access to arts and culture locally. No prior knowledge of the arts is needed for young people to get involved and find out what careers are on offer in the creative industries.

Cambridge participants will spend time with the team at the University of Cambridge Museums (a consortium of eight museums and the Botanic Gardens), the council’s City Events team (which runs outdoor and civic events such as Music in the Parks and Fireworks Night), Kettle’s Yard (a contemporary art gallery) and Cambridge University Press & Assessment (publishing house). 

Participants will also spend one day learning about the psychology of resilience, coping mechanisms and goal achievement models.

The deadline to apply to take part in the online-only week in April is Friday 31 March; and for the Cambridge week in July is Wednesday 31 May.

Travel arrangements for students to attend will be arranged and paid for by SMBP in advance, with lunch provided for students on each day of the programme (excluding online sessions).

Find out more or register online.

Cllr Alice Gilderdale, Executive Councillor for Recovery, Employment and Community Safety, said: “Both weeks are fantastic opportunities for young people to gain some real-world experience of work and we would encourage young people to sign up now for whichever opportunity suits you best.

“The Cambridge week has a particular focus on careers linked to creativity and culture, which could include anything form lighting technicians to box office teams, and museum curators to communications teams. Roles in the creative industries also provide numerous transferable skills which can benefit young people starting out in the world of work.

“We recognise that a lot of young people may not have easy access to the arts in their day to day lives, and so a career in the creative industries may seem unimaginable. There really is no experience necessary to join in on the work experience programme, and we would encourage any young person who wants to gain some skills and learn about the arts to apply now.”

If schools would like to help promote this opportunity to young people, the council team can provide posters and leaflets, or come into school to talk at careers fairs or other sessions – please contact to discuss this.

Similarly if any large Cambridge employers within the arts would like to sign up as a business partner for future years, please email the team.

For more information about My Cambridge.