SPA Conference session: Talking about Apprenticeships

One-line description:A structured discussion on the benefits, experiences and pitfalls of hiring a software apprentice
Session format: Goldfish Bowl with initial pre [read about the different session types]
Abstract:We have been taking on apprentices for 2 years. This year we've gone one step further and created a Technical Academy to provide classroom based training, mentorship and guided learning for our apprentices. So far we think it has worked and we'd like to share how we did it.

More importantly we'd like to get feedback on our approach, hear stories of similar initiatives and ultimately convince every attendee to go back to their company and hire an apprentice. We'll structure the discussion to include topics along the lines of experiences, reasons to hire an apprentice, potential problems, lessons learnt, curriculum ideas, recruitment, team dynamics, convincing your team and where to start.
Audience background:Developers, product managers, team leaders, senior managers and academics could all take part - the more diverse the group the better.
Benefits of participating:Learn how a successful apprenticeship programme could be run, gain ideas for a curriculum, find out why you should (or not) hire an apprentice, contribute to the community understanding of hiring and training apprentices.
Materials provided:Flipchart for recording the main points of the discussion
Process:Presentation followed by a goldfish bowl beginning with questions about the presentation as a starting point for a structured discussion.
Detailed timetable:00:00 - 00:25 Presentation
00:25 - 00:35 Goldfish bowl begins with questions about presentation
00:35 - 01:05 Goldfish bowl continues with structured discussion
01:05 - 01:15 Summary of main points covered
Outputs:Slides from the presentation, blog post on discussion and the summary of main points covered. Summary of main points will also be visible at the end.
History:Not in this format but a similar discussion was had at XP Day 2012 which gave me the idea to take this further in a structured way to a wider audience.
1. Paul Shannon
2. Chris Watson