“Our intent for the careers programme is to enhance learners’ personal development to have a powerful impact in the creative arts. Students take the skills and knowledge, behaviour and attitudes they learn and apply them to their career ambitions within the growing creative arts sector. Students are supported by our qualified and impartial careers service to make good decisions in meeting skills needs, taking their next steps into higher education, apprenticeships or employment.”

We do this with a clear understanding of your needs and will help you to explore how you might establish your career, and manage it long term. East London and Walthamstow has a cultural history in the arts and it continues to be a growing sector in line with local skills plans. The Academy has really fantastic industry links to open doors for you.

The careers education programme is straightforward – develop the plan and do the plan. It’s as simple as that, and we’ve got a great careers team to support you, including our on site job centre Cafe Works.

Careers Programme 2021-22 (next review date August 2022)

Careers Information, Advice and Guidance Policy

Careers Leader – Victoria Spence –


We are pleased to be working towards a national kitemark for careers provision, the Quality in Careers Standard.

Big Creative Academy Certificate of Commitment – March 2022

Cafe Works is a public advice and guidance centre specialising in the creative arts, supporting you to take the next steps in your creative career. It might be finding a job or an apprenticeship, building your portfolio or setting up your own business. We also support established creative businesses with events and advice.

Here you’ll find lots of useful resources for your career journey, supporting what you learn on your course at Big Creative Academy.

Creative arts sector information – do your research

First of all you might want to consider whether the job you want to do is in a growing industry. This is called Labour Market Information (LMI) and you can look at the websites below to help you understand different jobs, salaries and requirements.

LMI for All

How to Use Labour Market Information

The Future of Work 2020-2030: Where are the job opportunities for young people?

This is Music 2021

How to go about finding what I’m interested in

You might be lucky and be very sure about what you want to do, but others might want a little more inspiration. There are a number of theories of how to go about understanding what’s right for you. The better you understand your own values, the better choices you’re going to make in sustaining a career and being happy while you’re doing it.

Career matching theory


Happenstance theory

Building your portfolio

Coming soon…

Plain English and Creative CVs

Coming soon…

The best thing a parent can do is to listen to their young person and start a conversation about what they might do after they finish their course at Big Creative Academy. We’re here to help you do that. 

Supporting your Young Person in their Creative Careers – Presentations

Introduction to Creative Careers and Labour Market Information Victoria Spence, Careers Lead

UCAS and how to support decision making and applications Jyoti Farmah, Careers Advisor

The university experience Jacqueline Chambers, University of the Arts, London

Traineeships and Apprenticeships Sabrei Ackah and Saskia Summerhill, Big Creative Training

Apprenticeships Mythbusting Jyoti Farmah, Careers Advisor

Parent information on apprenticeships

A Parents Guide to Apprenticeships

Parents and Carers Pack – Apprenticeship Information

See the Big Creative Education alumni page

Apprenticeships are an opportunity to earn while you learn. You will be employed in a job role in a company and you will spend 80% of your time there. You will also do some coursework to supplement your work, which you will do 20% of the time. It’s a great way to get an entry level job in an industry and work your way up.

Big Creative Training is the Academy’s sister organisation and is an independent training provider. They run apprenticeship programmes with employers. The apprenticeships team will get to know you, run events and keep you up to date with the opportunities they have. Big Creative Academy students are guaranteed an interview with an employer.

Big Creative Training Apprenticeships 

You can look at the different apprenticeship options at the link below. Think of them like choosing a course and make sure it’s the right level for you. There are apprenticeships where you can achieve a degree at the same time, with no cost to you.

Level 2 – equivalent to GCSEs

Level 3 – equivalent to A Levels

Level 4/5 – equivalent to a foundation degree

Level 6 – equivalent to an undergraduate degree

Level 7 – equivalent to a postgraduate degree

Institute of Apprenticeship and Technical Education – apprenticeship standards

Useful information on apprenticeships

A Guide to Apprenticeships

Higher and Degree Apprenticeships

How to write a winning apprenticeship application

If you want to continue studying, you might want to think about going to university and doing an undergraduate degree.



30% of jobs within the creative arts are freelance, rising to as much as 70% in certain fields like music.

It’s a good idea to have your professional platforms looking good, and get some information about how you can work freelance.

This website, Underpinned, is a great starting point for what you need to do.