Starbucks opens up Apprenticeship Programme to Hearing-Impaired Partners

Baristas in London become the first to take on a level 2 diploma qualification

To mark the start of National Apprenticeship Week in the UK, Starbucks has extended its apprenticeship programme to enable hearing-impaired partners (employees) to undertake an apprenticeship. Hearing-impaired partners are now able to complete a Level 2 hospitality apprenticeship standard, which includes the opportunity to also gain a Level 2 Customer Service diploma at the same time.  

Hearing Impaired Partners

 

Since introducing its apprenticeship programme in 2012, over 1,300 partners have enrolled on a Starbucks apprenticeship, alongside a commitment to provide another 1,000 apprenticeships by 2020.

Led by Russell Butcher, senior manager, education, skills and qualifications, Starbucks have worked with Remit Training to tailor their existing apprenticeship programme to suit sign language partners. This has included adapting their online e-learning portal to incorporate sign text, as well as introducing additional learning support resource, in the form of a specialist sign language interpreter to work alongside Remit’s core training and assessment team.

Russell said: “Our apprenticeship programme has always been about inclusivity and providing opportunities for all of our partners to improve their skills and propel their careers.  When we heard that our hearing-impaired partners wanted to join the programme, we were delighted and determined to find a way to make this possible.”

“We are thankful to our training partner Remit Training who have demonstrated innovation and tenacity to make the necessary programme adjustments, adapting the learning and training content and overarching delivery model.”

Starbucks UK apprenticeship programme is run in partnership with training provider Remit Training. Sue Pittock, CEO of Remit, said “This is a first for Remit in providing a specialist sign language programme as part of an apprenticeship. We are thrilled to extend our relationship with Starbucks and lead in the education sector for the hearing-impaired.”

To celebrate inclusivity at Starbucks, sign language partners in stores in London have been given specially-designed aprons with sign language symbols of the word ‘Starbucks’ stitched onto their aprons.