Mentorship FAQs


Here you will find Frequently Asked Questions around the  SYP mentorship scheme. Last year the regional chairs did a Q&A webinar answering questions about the mentorship schemes which you can watch on our YouTube channel here. If you cannot find an answer here to your question, contact us at sypchair@thesyp.org.uk or syp.mentorship@gmail.com 

 

Do I need to be a member of the Society of Young Publishers to apply for the mentorship scheme?

No. The mentorship scheme is open to members and non-members alike. We appreciate that not everyone is able to afford an SYP membership at this time and we don’t want people to be excluded from applying based on that.

Should you wish to become a member of the SYP, you can do so by signing up here. Doing so gives you access to our resources along with member discounts – including free tickets to certain events, plus discounted tickets to our conferences.

 

Who is the mentorship scheme for?

During the current application phase there are two streams.

Into is for those looking to secure their first role within the publishing industry.

Ahead is for those who are within the first few years of their publishing career and are seeking to progress – that could mean they want advice on how to reach the next level, change sectors, or change departments.

Please note that SYP London runs a Launch stream for those interested in going freelance or starting their own business. This will return in 2021.

 

Is the scheme only open to those currently unemployed? If I have a job, be that in the industry or not, can I still apply?

If you are working in a role outside of publishing, you can apply to the Into strand of the  mentorship scheme. Likewise, if you are unemployed you can also apply.

If you currently work in publishing and are based in one of those regions offering the Ahead strand of the mentorship scheme (SYP North, SYP Oxford, SYP South West), you can apply for that in order to secure a mentor to help push you to the next phase in your career.

 

Can I apply to be a mentee on the Into stream if I am an intern?

Yes. If you are an intern and you are considered more of a trainee than a permanent employee. Therefore we would suggest you apply for a spot on the Into stream.

 

What areas of the UK and Ireland does each branch cover on the mentorship scheme?

  • SYP Ireland: Ireland, Northern Ireland
  • SYP London: Buckinghamshire, London, East Sussex, Essex, Greater London, Hertfordshire,  Kent, Surrey, West Sussex
  • SYP North: Cheshire, Cleveland, Cumbria, Durham, Humberside, Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside, North Yorkshire, Northumberland, South Yorkshire, Tyne & Wear, West Yorkshire
  • SYP Oxford: Oxfordshire
  • SYP Scotland: Scotland
  • SYP South West: Wales, Avon, Berkshire, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Hereford, Shropshire, Somerset, Wiltshire
  • SYP UK: Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Derbyshire, Hereford & Worcester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk, North-Hampshire, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Suffolk, Warwickshire, West Midlands

 

How will my location affect my application?

Each SYP branch is responsible for their own regions listed above, which means both securing mentors and selecting mentees. If you are based in the South West, you should apply to the SYP South West scheme. If successful you will be paired with a mentor who is either based in or from that region. It is the same process elsewhere.

 

What if I live in London or the South East?

SYP London ran their mentorship scheme earlier in the year for those living in these regions and will reopen applications next year. We ask that you please respect that the mentorship applications opening now are for those based elsewhere who were unable to apply for the London scheme. It would be unfair for those living in London or the South East to have two opportunities to apply for a mentor whereas those based elsewhere only have one.

 

I live in London or the South East and didn’t know about the mentorship scheme that ran earlier in the year, does that mean I can apply now?

Again, please respect that those within other regions of the country need to be prioritised during this window. There will be more opportunities for you to secure a mentor next year.

 

I don’t live in the UK and Ireland, can I still apply?

As an organisation we want to help as many people as possible. However we need to focus our resources on helping those based in the UK and Ireland as this is where we are based. For now we cannot expand that reach internationally. You are welcome to become a member and make use of our resources and attend events, but we are unable to provide you with a mentor.

 

If I am studying or working in a different region to my home location, how do I decide which mentorship scheme to apply for?

In this instance you should make the choice based on where you will be spending the majority of your time. For example, if you are from Nottingham but are studying in Edinburgh, you will likely spend most of your time in Scotland; therefore, apply for the SYP Scotland scheme.

 

Do I need to be studying a certain subject (e.g. Publishing) to apply?

You don’t need to be studying or have studied a specific subject to apply for the Into mentorship streams. It doesn’t matter if you have a Publishing or a Science degree, or if you haven’t gone to university at all. As long as you have a desire to work in the industry you can apply.

 

If I am currently in my first or second year of study and won’t be applying for jobs for another year or more, will a mentor still be helpful?

You can still apply but we would recommend that to make the most of the mentorship opportunity you wait until you are closer to applying for a role in the industry. What is discussed now could be less relevant in a few years as the industry and your interests change. Therefore to maximise the usefulness of the guidance it is probably best to wait.

Be assured that the scheme will be returning each year and therefore there will be more chances to secure a mentor down the line.

 

What happens if my location changes during the scheme?

Don’t worry about such changes in circumstances. You will still be able to continue your pairing with your mentor should you need to relocate.

 

What if I am not sure which department or sector of publishing I want to go into?

Still apply. We only ask about your preferred departments on the application form to find out more about your current interests. However, no one is expected to know where they want to spend the rest of their career from the get go. There are many departments and roles within publishing beyond the obvious. This mentorship could help you figure out the options available and where you are best suited.

For a brief insight into what departments it is possible to work in within the industry click here.

 

Does it matter if there are no mentors currently working in the department I am interested in?

A mentor can still provide valuable guidance even if they are not working in the department you want to/currently work in. A mentor is more than a fountain of departmental knowledge. Our mentors could have worked across multiple departments and know what skills are best suited to them, while they will also be experienced in other office situations universal to the industry. This support is still valuable and worth listening to.

 

Will a mentorship help me get a job / work experience?

While we hope the mentoring will help you gain these things, the mentor is not there to directly offer a work experience placement or job with their own companies or through their contacts. We ask that mentees respect this stance and do not request such opportunities.

 

Do I have to attend in-person meetings?

Mentees and mentors are free to choose the time and date of each meeting, so they can easily be scheduled to fit around working hours, childcare and other pre-existing commitments. This includes whether the meetings are held virtually.

 

Is there an age limit for applying?

Much like being a member of the SYP or volunteering to be on the committee, there is no age limit to applying for the scheme. Whether you are 18 or 58, you can apply.

 

Where can I apply and when is the deadline for applying?

This will be announced later.

 

When will I find out if I am successful or not?

This will be announced later. To ensure you receive your notification please add @thesyp.org.uk email addresses to the safe senders list in your email account. That will reduce the risk of such emails going into your spam folder.