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Scottish Crannog Centre’s ‘Fantastic and Worthwhile’ Apprentice Scheme

Photo Credit: Richard Sutcliffe

LISTEN: Rachel Backshall describes what an SVQ is and what the apprentices do at the open air museum

The Scottish Crannog Centre has taken on five new apprentices, aged between 16 and 18, who are progressing towards an SVQ in customer service.

An SVQ is a qualification ‘based on standards of competence that describe a candidate’s ability to work in real conditions’, meaning that they’ve shown their capability in working with the public.

Rachel Backshall, one of the centre’s community archaeologists, events organisers, and SVQ assessor, said: “SVQ is a Scottish vocational qualification, and it’s organised and developed by the sector skills council and then accredited by the Scottish qualifications authority.

“By doing a vocational qualification, they get quite a variety in a choice of learning and it’s learning tailored to how they learn.”

Ms Backshall says the five new apprentices ‘are really making a difference’ at the centre.

She added: “They are working to deliver tours, they’re learning to manage the front desk and manage the booking systems. Which is particularly relevant at the moment because its new to all of us, booking tours.

“They’re also developing different areas outside and developing their own particular projects which they’re interested in. So whether its cooking, or textiles, or woodworking, they’ve all got their own specialisation.”

Thinking of how the apprentices have developed since starting, Ms Backshall says they’ve given her a ‘great sense of value to the work’ at the Crannog Centre.

She says: “Generally, we’re looking at how they work with the public and how they deliver information and if they can adapt to different situations so that their customer service skills are the best they can be.”

Ms Backshall explains: “There’s no pass or fail, it’s all about achieving, or being on the way to achieving, so it’s a very supportive qualification.”

More information on the work of the apprentices following this link: https://www.crannog.co.uk/blog/crannog-blog/458-summer-reflections-welcoming-new-faces-to-our-community

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