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Skills for Success secures Heritage Lottery Fund support

MGS has received a grant of almost £570,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to provide museum-based traineeships across Scotland for non-graduates.

Museums Galleries Scotland’s vocational training programme secures Heritage Lottery Fund support

Museums Galleries Scotland (MGS) has received a grant of almost £570,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) under its Skills for the Future programme. The MGS project, Skills for Success, aims to provide museum-based traineeships across Scotland for non-graduates.

MGS will be working in partnership with the Prince’s Trust to deliver eighteen entry-level and four management-level work-based traineeships across Scotland for non-graduates with the qualities that the museums sector needs. Trainees will undertake the SVQ3 in Museums and Galleries Practice that was developed as part of the original HLF-funded programme, and will have access to bespoke training, including a leadership programme for the management trainees. Other partners include the Museums Association, Social Enterprise Academy and Fife ETC.

This is the second iteration of a highly-successful programme run by Scotland’s national body for museum development. The first traineeship programme, which ran from 2014 - 2016, provided opportunities for twenty non-graduates to take part in a ground-breaking work-based training programme at seventeen host institutions. The original programme provided an alternative route of entry into the sector, improving training resources, and diversifying the workforce by encouraging applications from non-graduates who would not usually apply for posts in the museums sector. Trainees were given the opportunity to undertake roles identified as sector-wide skills gaps, including collections care and management, digitisation, public programming and volunteer management. 87% of MGS’ previous non-graduate trainees have since found employment.

In running Skills for Success, MGS will be building the capacity of the sector to deliver vocational qualifications by developing an assessment centre and training sector professionals as assessors and internal verifiers to maintain the legacy of this project. 

Museums Galleries Scotland’s Chief Executive, Joanne Orr, said “MGS is delighted to have secured this important funding from the HLF, which will enable us to continue our commitment to diversifying the museums workforce and increasing entry points into the sector. We’re also delighted to be embarking on a new and important partnership with the Prince’s Trust, whose expertise will be invaluable in this project. We look forward to working together and thank the HLF for their continued support.”

Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop, said “This partnership represents an excellent effort to provide a non-graduate route into work and address the shaping of the future workforce for our museums. Thanks to these traineeships, it will be possible to extend support to young people in Scotland in developing managerial and interpersonal skills useful for their future career. With a view to 2018 Year of Young People, the Scottish Government is committed to widening access and participation in the arts and cultural sector, enabling young people in Scotland to develop their skills for the future.”

The Heritage Lottery Fund’s Skills for the Future programme, which funded MGS’s Skills for Success, aims to address skills shortages in the sector and help diversify the workforce. By enhancing the skills and employability of trainees, and by helping the museums and galleries sector to address skills gaps in the workforce, the MGS programme will contribute to the aims of the Scottish Government’s Economic and Skills Strategies. Skills for Success is also consistent with the Scottish Government’s Programme for 2016 - 2017, which acknowledges the importance of workforce skills development, and outlines the Government’s support for cultural infrastructure including investment in museums and galleries.

Published 13 March 2017