Our employers have always known that apprenticeships allow them to train young people with industry specific and practical skills. Yet how do young people feel about the opportunities that Apprenticeships provide for them?
New figures released by the Government suggest that more and more young people are understanding the benefits of becoming an apprentice. In March this year more than 15% of 16 and 17 year olds are in Apprenticeships in comparison to last year, and interestingly, 8 out of 9 regions in England reported higher rates of young people in education or training.
The reform of Apprenticeships has meant that you, the employer, work with us to create and design the kind of course that teaches your employees the knowledge that you want them to have. This key reform has clearly made apprenticeships a respectable choice for career driven young people. There is real potential for this change to continue, with the high costs of university education and some graduates disillusioned with the employment market.
Furthermore Apprenticeships are shown to have a staggeringly positive influence on the economy, with at least £18 going back into the economy for every £1 the government invests in apprenticeships.
Apprenticeships offer a viable way for us to rectify the skills crisis. Though we can never stop striving to get more people into apprenticeships and improving our courses, these statistics are positive, and can only be good news for ourselves and our employer partners.
We strongly believe that there needs to be more women in Engineering. This year, we have welcomed our greatest intake of female Engineering students to date.
Thirteen girls aged 16-plus will be commencing Level 2 and 3 Engineering apprenticeships through-out the North-West area this September. Currently only three per cent of professional construction engineers in the UK are women, which is the lowest in the EU.
Daisy Mitchell, 17, studying an Engineering Maintenance and Operations apprenticeship says: “I have a strong interest in mechanical engineering. The UK is screaming out for engineers and the job prospects are very good.”
By raising the accessibility of technical routes into the engineering sector, BTEC and work-based qualifications can encourage more women into engineering sectors.
Daisy agrees: “The practical knowledge will be useful in my ideal career and will take me into even more advanced training”
According to researchers at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, by 2020 almost half of women will have a higher-level academic or vocational qualification and will take two-thirds of all new highly-skilled jobs created in the next six years.
Training 2000’s CEO Steve Gray concludes “Training 2000 is one of a number of education bodies which works hard to battle stereotypes that reduce young women’s career choices and we hope to create the female role models of the future.
“As Chairman at Visions Learning Trust, I’m pleased that they too have a high level of female students choosing Construction and Engineering as subjects this year. However there is still progress to be made, as recent research by GirlGuiding UK has shown that 62 per cent of 11-21 year-old girls unfortunately believe STEM courses such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics are just for boys.”