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Students join Cambridge University Press for a week of work experience
Cambridge University Press welcomed eight students for a week of work experience in eight different departments, from Monday, 2 July to Friday, 6 July, providing students with the opportunity to work at a global organisation and experience working in a professional environment.
Every year the Press offers a week of work experience to local students. Students were able to apply for the department that they were most interested in and after an interview with the manager of their chosen department, the successful students were offered a placement. This enables students to work in a department specifically linked to their interests and potentially their future career plans.
Campbell, who worked in Education Technology, had the opportunity to learn more about his department and spent the week learning various new skills such as working on small Python projects. He said: 'the program has been very welcoming and educational so far and I’m eager to learn more about the Education Technology department.'
Sophie, who worked in Customer Services, learnt about the A2R system and its use in processing claims, membership fulfilment and member services. She also attended several meetings and said ‘I was able to gain an improved understanding of the collaborative and transparent approach between different departments on both a local and global scale’.
Not all the students were based at University Printing House. Hannah worked in the Cambridge University Press Bookshop in Trinity Street, but joined the rest of us for group sessions. She said that ‘doing work experience at the Press helped me to gain invaluable insight not just into what goes on behind the scenes of a bookshop but into a working environment. The work experience week has been tailored to help me grow my skills and knowledge.’
The program highlights how the Press engages with the community and supports young people locally. In addition to working in different departments, we also attended a group session covering routes into the business, where we met current apprentices, former apprentices and graduates, and a group session on recruitment where we were given tips about finding jobs, applying for jobs and interviews. These helped us discover more about the company and provided us with helpful tips that will be beneficial not just in the publishing industry, but in any future workplace.
The manager of the marketing placement, Ellena Moriarty said: ‘The summer work placement is a fantastic opportunity for sixth form students to learn more about how an international publishing house operates.’
Gemma Matheson, manager of the Customer Services placement, said: ‘I think the work experience programme offers a useful, interesting and hopefully enjoyable opportunity for young people. It will also help give them an idea of the day to day workings of the company and give them insight into the industry as a whole.’
Although not all of us came to the Press with a future goal of working in the publishing industry, it has been eye-opening to see just how much goes on in the business, and how many different roles there are across the departments. All of us have learnt incredibly useful and transferable skills that we will be able to take with us to whatever career we go into, publishing or otherwise.
Article by Sarah Snelling, Communications Work Experience Student
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