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At Art UK, we are passionate about providing opportunities to young people with ambitions to pursue a career in the arts and heritage sector. As part of this, we run a Summer Work Experience Programme.

Summer 2021 Work Experience Programme

Are you passionate about pursuing a career in the arts? Do you believe in the power of digital to transform lives? We’re looking for eight enthusiastic participants between the ages of 16 and 24 to join our Summer 2021 Work Experience Programme. The programme will be run online and is open to applicants from throughout the UK.

We welcome and encourage applications from candidates who are under-represented in the creative industries, particularly individuals who experience physical, mental, or social barriers to accessing the arts.

About the opportunity

You will join us for a week-long online placement where we involve you fully in the work that we do. We schedule a full programme of activities that will enable you to develop your skills, build your confidence, and learn more about the variety of career opportunities available in the arts and heritage sector.

The programme involves spending time with different teams in our organisation; Commercial, Content, Copyright & Licensing, Development, Digitisation, HR & Operations, and Learning & Engagement. The tasks you will carry out closely relate to our core activities and the projects taking place during that given time period, with tasks closely mirroring activities undertaken by each team to give you an understanding of the type of work carried out on a day-to-day basis at Art UK.

Where possible, we will arrange for you to spend up to one day of your work experience placement with a local collection whose artworks are on Art UK. Please note that visits to collections will be dependent on the availability of participating collections in your local area, and all in-person activities are subject to current government guidelines and restrictions relating to COVID-19. 

At the end of your placement, you’ll have a reflection and careers session with our HR & Operations team. In this we offer advice and tips on finding paid and voluntary positions, spend time looking at the application and recruitment process, offer advice on writing applications and CVs, and share tips on how to prepare for and conduct yourself during interviews, with both employment and further education in mind. We also encourage all staff members involved in the programme to speak about their own careers, to give you an insight into the different career paths that have brought staff to their current roles.

We ask all applicants to complete a short questionnaire as part of their application so that we may use your responses to tailor activities to your areas of interest where possible. Throughout your placement, we’ll be encouraging you to give your opinion to us freely and provide feedback to ensure you get the most out of your week with us and to help us develop our programme.

Key information

  • Monday to Friday from 9.30am to 4.30pm, with a one-hour lunch break
  • The programme will be delivered online and remotely
  • Participants must have computer access with a stable internet connection, and ideally the facility to undertake video conference calls via Zoom or similar
  • Applications open to participants aged 16 to 24
  • We particularly welcome applications from individuals who experience physical, mental, or social barriers to accessing the arts

Please note that we only take on one individual per week to ensure we can provide the best support and experience possible to all participants.

Date options available

  • Week 1: Monday 5 to Friday 9 July
  • Week 2: Monday 12 to Friday 16 July
  • Week 3: Monday 19 to Friday 23 July
  • Week 4: Monday 26 to Friday 30 July
  • Week 5: Monday 2 to Friday 6 August
  • Week 6: Monday 9 to Friday 13 August
  • Week 7: Monday 16 to Friday 20 August
  • Week 8: Monday 23 to Friday 27 August

Ahead of your work experience, you will be invited to attend a two-hour group induction session with other programme participants. Group inductions will take place on Wednesday 16 June for July participants, and Wednesday 21 July for August participants. Please ensure you are available for the relevant group induction date when selecting your date preferences.

How to apply

Please download the Work Experience application form. To apply, please submit your completed application form to by 9am on Wednesday 19 May. If you are experiencing issues downloading the document or require support in completing your form, please contact

If you have any access or learning requirements please do communicate these to us on your application form, outlining how best we can support you and accommodate your needs throughout your placement with us. Your individual requirements will be fully considered to ensure you have the best experience possible on the programme, and we will ensure any access requirements are communicated to participating collections in advance.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to join us for a video call on Wednesday 2 June. If you are not available on this date please advise us when you submit your application, offering an alternative date that you are available that week. All candidates will be contacted shortly after video calls have taken place to advise if your application has been successful.

Please note that as we only have a limited number of work experience opportunities available we are not able to offer placements to all applicants. However, we will contact all applicants to advise you of the status of your application no later than a fortnight after the telephone interview date.

Thank you for your interest in the Art UK Summer Work Experience Programme.