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Government signs off on 'milestone' event industry apprenticeship scheme

Apprentices can be recruited from January after the Trailblazer Scheme jumped the final hurdle for approval

Pictured: Mark Riches, chair of the Industry Advisory Board

The event industry's Trailblazer Scheme has received final government approval, becoming the first fully-approved apprenticeship programme for event professionals, 

Apprentices can be recruited as of January 2017 after the Assessment Plan, which sits at the heart of the scheme, passed the final milestone of government approvals.

Industry leaders behind the scheme have already engaged a series of training providers to agree how they can partner with businesses and support both employers and apprentices. 

“This is a major milestone for the industry and comes as a result of a lot of hard work from people, both within and outside of the events community,” said Sarah Wright of Sarah Wright Consulting, who has been working for an industry apprenticeship scheme since 2008. “The industry had been tasked by government to address apprenticeships and we have developed a professional and creditable scheme that means we can provide access to more diverse talent to event businesses right across the country.” 

The apprenticeship scheme will announce dates for an industry-wide meeting in January 2017 where employers can gain more information about how to employ apprentices and learn more about the parameters of the scheme. Organisers will also launch new industry branding, and a major online portal designed to inform, engage and support both employers and potential apprentices. 

“This is a big moment for events in the UK. Currently there is a lot of discussion across our industry sectors about our professionalism, our standards and the quality of our people,” said Mark Riches, chair of the Industry Advisory Board. “This scheme allows us to both contribute to the future of talented people in our country, yet to also benefit from the influx of new and varied professionals for our industry.” 

Dale Parmenter, CEO of DRP, whose team have been supporting the development of this industry scheme, said: “Today’s achievement could only have been accomplished through the hard work, time and endeavour of a lot of people. It is great to see the industry come together to create a scheme that will bring new talent pipelines to our sector. 

“As someone who currently employs seven apprentices across the disciplines of design, IT, digital and video production, we can’t wait to take on event management apprentices.” 

James Greenshields, chief executive of Media for Development, said “I’m delighted that a grant of over £100,000 from the Monument Trust allowed for the events industry apprenticeship to be developed and for non-traditional learners, including ex-offenders, to be prioritised.”

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