BPIF campaign celebrates National Apprenticeship Week

Richard Stuart-Turner
Thursday, March 12, 2015

The BPIF recently gathered together 11 print apprentices from member companies at its London offices to produce a piece of collateral to promote apprenticeships in the print industry to schools.

The day, which took place on 20 February, saw the apprentices collaborate with a designer on the task in aid of National Apprenticeship Week, which is taking place this week.

With the current average age in the print industry at 48, the apprentices aimed to design a piece of collateral that they felt would attract school-leavers into print.

During the day, which was filled with debate and discussion, a number of reasons emerged as to why each had chosen an apprenticeship.

De La Rue process apprentice Daniel Pelly said he enjoys “getting paid to learn and meeting people he never would have done before” while BCQ Group apprentice printer Will Lee chose an apprenticeship to “develop new skills while being in a full-time working environment”.

Galloways lithographic printer Liam Walton said: “There was a mixture of different apprentices there and it was interesting to speak to other people involved in it. It was nice to do that and share experiences and I think we all learned a lot from each other.”

The apprentices decided to produce a 4pp brochure with a theme of ‘the biggest industry you’ve never thought of…’. They were split into two groups, one team focusing on design and one team writing copy. They decided on all aspects of the brochure including paper, style and finishing.

The aim of the brochure was to highlight how print is used by everyone, everyday. Inside the booklet the apprentices included information on the job opportunities that the printing industry offers and explained why apprenticeships are a great route to a career.

“There was so much we could have got in the brochure but I think the main challenge was finding what the critical information that was needed was, and how to try and make that into something that would be aimed at school children,” said Walton.

The brochure was then printed by BCQ Group last Wednesday (4 March) and mailed to more than 500 schools across the UK, ready to arrive on Monday (9 March) ready for the start of National Apprenticeship Week. The process was also filmed and emailed to MPs to encourage their continued support of apprenticeships.

BPIF programme director, Ursula Daly, said: “It is so important that school-leavers are given information about apprenticeships, it is the schools' duty to allow students to make informed decisions and to do this they need to be aware of all of their options.”

BCQ Group managing director Chris Knowles added: “There is a huge value to having apprentices at BCQ, they bring new fresh ideas into an established industry.”

The BPIF said it is happy to make artwork available to any printer who would like to print copies of the brochure and distribute to local schools. For more information, contact amy.hutchinson@bpif.org.uk.

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