Building contacts, chasing stories and keeping Cumbria informed, Newsquest apprentices get to the heart of their communities.

One of our apprentices, Erin Gaskell, 24, began her career with The Mail in September 2019 and has achieved a number of gold standard results throughout her apprenticeship journey.

She said: "I'm currently studying for my NCTJ multimedia diploma with the help of Darlington College.

"I spend one day a week taking part in online lessons alongside other apprentices and community reporters from different organisations around the UK - and thanks to the global pandemic, we all got to experience the highs and lows of virtual exams together!

"A few of the topics we cover over the two year course are law, public affairs and Teeline shorthand - we also get hands on with video creation and editing.

"It has definitely been a challenge, but it is not one that anyone should pass on.

"It's a really rewarding job getting to work so closely with the community and building relationships with the everyday heroes that keep the town ticking.

"That's something I wouldn't have been able to do without this opportunity that was given to me, and I think these real world experiences of working with the people who make up the community are just as important as the grades that you are given.

"I would recommend an apprenticeship at Newsquest for anyone wanting to take a dive into the world of media -what better way to learn than to be in the thick of it?

"And it doesn't matter if you're a teen taking your first steps into the world of employment, in your 20's still finding your feet or you are older and looking for a career change, between the reporters, class mates and tutors, there's always going to be someone willing to talk your ear off with advice and anecdotes to help you along the way."

Joining the Cumbrian workforce last year was apprentice Alex Candlin, 24, who has been working for Newsquest since February 2020.

Alex Candlin of The Westmorland Gazette said: “Beginning in February 2020 I found the role as an apprentice to be both interesting and challenging.

“Over time the work became clearer to me and my colleagues were always there to give me the information and the advice that I needed.

“My college work and my office shifts were easy to manage side by side, as well as being mutually beneficial to one another.”

If you are interested in becoming Newsquest Apprentice and would like to find out more information, visit: