We had a sixth form student in here at County Hall last week. Over the last five years we had maybe 10 people on work experience. We've also had people shadowing for a day, simply to get a flavour. However, we don't advertise our placements, we've had some bad experiences in the past with students who came to us because we were on a list and looked different, not because they wanted to see what the County Archaeologist's office does.
We like to take people who have an existing commitment to the discipline, so if we've met them through a school talk, summer digging, ex Young Archaeologist's Club member, or spoken about universities/jobs, we may discuss placement opportunities. I say may because it depends on how busy we are. We haven't taken anyone from higher education, but we might. Unfortunately, the state of play is such that we cannot offer financial support or pay.
Unfortunately we cannot take lots of people, there are only two of us and it does take time to organise work for the student. Nikki, with us last week, did a great job and really contributed to a site meeting and to major piece of conservation work, as well as answering the phone, photocopying and dealing with all the usual junk that passes for work.
If CBA were no produce a list I think that, in principle, we'd be interested in going on it but we'd need to be sure we weren't going to be swamped by applications.
I'm surprised at the number of people who do want to come into our office to see what we do, apart from chatting on britarch. Most people that want work experience probably do want digging or museum work but there are enough who want to play with the SMR. That's no bad thing, when I went to college I knew about trowels and contexts but SMRs were a bit of a mystery. They still are on some mornings.
From: Don Henson [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: 28 February 2001 17:09
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: The state of work experience in the UK
If any organisations would like to let me know that they definitely take
work experience students or even that they absolutely do not then I would be
pleased to hear from them.
Council for British Archaeology
Bowes Morrell House
York YO1 9WA
tel: 01904 671417
fax: 01904 671384
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