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UNESCO calls for emerging heritage professionals to apply to its new Heritage Apprentice initiative

UNESCO calls for emerging heritage professionals to apply to its new Heritage Apprentice initiative

Applications accepted now through 20 January 2022 for the inaugural session of March through November 2022

To expand the impacts of the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation programme, UNESCO introduces the ‘Heritage Apprentice’ initiative. This initiative provides opportunities for early-career heritage professionals to strengthen their capacity in heritage management and gain valuable real-world experience in working with UNESCO Heritage Awards-winning mentors on conservation, design or research projects of their interests. 

Who should apply for the apprenticeship?

•    Emerging professionals in heritage-related fields
•    Post-graduate students in heritage-related fields
•    Professionals in other fields, who may be aiming to expand their current professional discipline(s) to heritage field (prior experience in heritage conservation, research or management will be an asset)

Apprentice’s Role

Young professionals will engage with leading heritage experts and establish meaningful connections with fellow practitioners 

•    Contribute to on-going heritage projects led by your mentor
•    Engage professionally with your mentor 
•    Actively participate in all required sessions and activities by the mentor and UNESCO 
•    Take an active role in your own learning

Mentor’s Role

Leading heritage practitioners will provide training, mentorship and other learning-focused opportunities to young professionals, inspiring the next generation of heritage practitioners.  

•    Guide the apprentice's contribution to heritage projects you are conducting
•    Provide mentorship and knowledge exchange
•    Facilitate networking for the apprentice with broader group of heritage professionals and stakeholders in your area of work

How will the Apprenticeship work?

In its inaugural year of 2022, apprentices will be chosen from the applicant pool to allow for one apprentice assigned per mentor. The matchmaking of the apprentice and mentor will be based on the interests and preferences identified in the application form. The final selection of apprentices will be made by participating mentors. Upon an applicant’s acceptance into the program, an agreement will be signed between the mentor and the apprentice to define agreed-upon terms and required commitments from both parties. 

At the end of the programme, the apprentice will be asked to present her/his experience at an international conference to be organized by UNESCO, tentatively scheduled for October 2022. Mentors and apprentices will receive a letter of acknowledgment from UNESCO upon completion of their engagements.

The apprenticeship is self-funded by applicants, including travel, per diem, and related costs, but there may be occasions where mentors will assist in some manner, which is completely at the discretion of the mentor. For further details, see mentor profiles.

*Apprenticeship activities, will be either online, on-site or hybrid, depending on the public health situation and the needs of mentors and their organizations.

How to apply

  1. Check Mentor Profiles (below)
  2. Fill in the Apprentice Application Form
  3. Send your Form and CV to heritageawards@unesco.org

Application deadline: 20 January 2022; 23:59 (11:59pm) Bangkok time (GMT+7)

Mentor Profiles

Before applying, please read through your chosen Mentor Profile carefully, including the location of the mentor and project, requirement to be online and/or on-site, any language requirement other than English, etc. 

Many mentors require the apprentice to be on-site. Please make sure you that are able to relocate or travel to destinations specified by the mentors. If any additional materials such as a portfolio is required, you can submit together with your CV to heritageawards@unesco.org at the time of your application.


Overview Programme Timeline (March–November 2022)





February - March 2022

March – October 2022

November 2022

  • Early February: Announcement of application results
  • Prepare for apprenticeship 
  • March: Apprenticeship Kick-off Orientation Session (Online)




  • Mentors and apprentices enter into agreements
  • Apprenticeship begins
  • Attend periodic networking events and ‘check-ins’ with UNESCO
  • Presentation of selected apprenticeship projects at UNESCO Bangkok International Conference
  • Finale event for mentors/apprentices
  • Letter of completion to be provided to apprentices
  • Feedback to the initiative