Kane is 21 and is currently in a Level 3 Libraries, Information and Archives Services Apprentice at Sandwell Archives in Smethwick. He decided to do an apprenticeship as he had always wanted to work in a library and wanted to learn and develop the skills needed to thrive in an information environment whilst also earning at the same time. He was supported by his employer and his tutor in LMP Education. 

Here is Kane’s apprenticeship journey so far 

“Originally, I did not intend to undertake an apprenticeship. I had just left my previous job and wanted to find a career in which I could establish myself. I had always wanted to work in a library so the advert for the apprenticeship I am undertaking seemed like a sign. 

The main benefits of undertaking an apprenticeship programme are the ability to learn new skills, gain first-hand experience and gain a qualification that can help establish yourself within a certain, specialised sector whilst also having the ability to earn whilst you do it. 

The best thing about my role is that it is so varied and interesting. I have the opportunity to undertake a range of fascinating and fulfilling tasks such as conducting research to answer user enquiries, setting up informative and eye-catching displays and handling varied ancient materials in my workplace houses. I learn something new every day which I always enjoy. 

I have received helpful support from my colleagues, employer and tutor whilst carrying out my apprenticeship. My employer has supported me by assigning me tasks that have allowed me to develop and meet the KSBs set out in the standard thus giving me the ability to gain practical experience. My tutor has supported me through the 1-2-1 learning sessions that have allowed me to develop the theoretical knowledge needed to carry out my role and have taught me how to recognise and apply it in real life. 

I would say research skills are the most important skill I have learnt because if you work in an archive you need to be able to research varied topics in great detail by using a range of sources. You need to be able to use your critical thinking skills to evaluate and select the most appropriate and trustworthy source of information. After finding the correct informational solution to the research enquiry you then need to be able to properly present and communicate your findings. Also, you need to be organised and methodical when researching so that your workings and final solution are clear and understandable. 

Undertaking this apprenticeship has enabled me to start my career to be within an archive/information/cultural heritage environment. I have applied for and received a conditional offer to study for an undergraduate degree in cultural heritage studies. I also plan to apply for foundation-level professional registration with the ARA (Archives & Records Association).” 

If you are interested in finding out more about the Apprenticeship opportunities available visit our apprenticeship page.

If you are interested in finding out more, check out the Library Information and Archives Services Apprenticeship Programme.

Library Assistant - Kane