Apprenticeship helps Preesall’s Luke to improve employability

Preesall is on the road to improve his employability after completing an Apprenticeship with Training 2000.

Twelve months ago, after leaving university, Luke Hill was unable to secure a job in his chosen field which left him feeling unconfident and uncertain about his future career plans.

After reviewing his options, Luke began to seek help from Positive Steps into Work, a support team at Blackpool Council which offers free advice on how to improve employability and support to unemployed residents living in the resort who want to get a job.

During this process, Luke was introduced to Apprenticeships, an option which would enable him to secure employment and a nationally-recognised qualification.

After being referred to Blackpool-based training provider, Training 2000, Luke started a Level 3 Apprenticeship in Business Administration, working across the Organisation and Workforce Development and Employee Relations teams.

Having volunteered in a similar administrational role previously, Luke already had some useful background knowledge in his chosen field, so the qualification proved to be well-suited to his existing skills and interests.

The 14-month Apprenticeship has encouraged Luke to get back on track for success, helping him to gain valuable skills and on-the-job experience such as supporting case workers, course admin and bookings, transcribing interviews and learning computer processes.

“Doing an Apprenticeship has enabled me to work across various teams within the Council, such as Organisation and Workforce Development and Employee Relations, and I am now working as part of the Payroll and HR administration team. Completing the Apprenticeship and having the opportunity to work across several teams has definitely broadened my skillset and future career prospects,” said Luke.

“This Apprenticeship has been a great option for me as I’ve been building up knowledge and skills, gaining qualifications and earning money all at the same time. My communication and time-management has significantly improved and I have a professional understanding of the role and responsibilities of the Council.

“I have enjoyed utilising my IT skills to help others in the office and the Apprenticeship has also helped to boost my confidence in a working environment.”

Cllr Simon Blackburn, Leader of Blackpool Council said: “Here in Blackpool, there is a real and well documented need to get more young people out of the spiral of unemployment and onto the career ladder.

“Apprenticeships are a great way to give young people a taste of work while they continue to learn new skills. Not only does it increase their employment chances but it also helps them grow as an individual.

“Luke has adjusted to working in the Council incredibly well and picked up the requirements of his role quickly. He is a very intelligent young man and sailed through his Apprenticeship and soon began to self-manage his own timescales and workload.”

Gillian Sloane, Career Development Advisor at Training 2000, concluded: “During his Apprenticeship, Luke presented himself as an efficient and dedicated individual who worked well both independently and as part of a larger team. He demonstrated excellent employability skills, attendance and professionalism and we think he will go far in his career.”

Training 2000 and Blackpool Council are currently working together as part of a campaign to create and fill 100 extra Apprenticeships places in just 100 days.

Any businesses who want to find out more about taking on an apprentice can contact Training 2000 by emailing [email protected] or calling 01254 54659.

Enhance your IT Skills For The Future

Training 2000 has launched a new IT User Apprenticeship in response to employer requests and learner demand.

Combining virtual learning and employer led on-the-job training, the Apprenticeship is available at both Level 2 and Level 3 and learners will gain the skills and knowledge required to be competent in many IT roles.

Rowena Brough, business manager at Training 2000, said: “Due to constant advancements in technology, an increasing number of employers are looking to recruit young, skilled IT users who can fulfil roles in support, resource development, social networking and software.

“As many administration Apprenticeships are not heavily dependent on IT skills, employers are hoping the IT User apprenticeship will fill this skills gap and encourage more young people to pursue a career in the industry.

“We are delighted to add the IT User Apprenticeship to our portfolio as this qualification will help employers to keep up with ever-changing developments in technology.

“Learners will also have the opportunity to gain the requisite skills and knowledge needed to succeed in IT-specific roles, helping to prevent a shortage of IT staff across all sectors and industries.”

To undertake the new Apprenticeship qualification, learners will need to have a minimum of three GCSEs at grade D or above, including a relevant ICT qualification

Warrington Apprentice Secures Place In Skills Final

A talented apprentice from Warrington has fought off tough competition to reach the finals of the WorldSkills UK National Competition.

Andrew Cartwright, aged 21, who works at Warrington-based Nuvia and is currently undertaking an Apprenticeship with Training 2000, is set to compete in the Mechanical CAD (Computer Aided Design) category of the national finals taking place at The Skills Show, being held at the NEC Birmingham from 14-16 November 2013.

During the three-day show, 800 of the country’s most talented apprentices and learners will compete in front of 100,000 visitors in 70 skills ranging from floristry to mechanical engineering.

Having made it through a series of regional heats, Andrew will join nine other competitors for three to four days of World Skills International training before attending the final.

Commenting on his achievement, Andrew said: “I am delighted to have reached the finals of such a prestigious competition and both Training 2000 and Nuvia have been extremely supportive of my future development.

“Taking part in the competition will allow me to build on my current skills, test my knowledge against my peers in the industry and help me to progress my future career.”

Jennie Osborne, corporate communications manager at Nuvia, added: “It takes hard work, determination, and a high level of skill to compete against the UK’s most talented learners and Andrew has proven that he has what it takes to be the best in the industry. We’d like to wish him the best of luck for the competition and are all rooting for him.”

Lianne Whittaker, business assurance coordinator at Training 2000, said: “Being invited to compete at The Skills Show 2013 is a fantastic achievement for Andrew and it will give him the opportunity to showcase his skills and experience at a National level. The Skills competitions are a prestigious event and Training 2000 are thrilled to be able to support Andrew on his journey”

Andrew will be heading to the competition along with six other Training 2000 apprentices who have reached the final of the Accounting Technician category.

Ben To Be Congratulated For Worldskills Success

Training 2000 apprentice, from Clitheroe, is set to meet Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, at the prestigious venue One Great George Street in the heart of Westminster, London, this week.

Ben Anderson, aged 22, who is employed by Burnley-based Motorsport Advanced Developments, was one of the 2012 WorldSkills champions and will be attending the Team UK Welcome Back Event, in celebration of his skills and achievements in the CNC turning category.

During the skills competition Ben went up against other competitors of a similar age with experience of CNC turning, which involves setting up and operating a metal-cutting machine designed for repetitive machining work.
Competing at the WorldSkills Leipzig 2013 event, Ben and his UK team mates received a total of two gold, one silver and three bronze medals, as well as 17 medallions for excellence.

As one of the successful team members, Ben will be greeted by Nick Clegg at the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office in Whitehall, London.

Lianne Whittaker, business assurance coordinator at Training 2000, said: “The team at Training 2000 are incredibly proud of Ben’s achievements at WorldSkills.

“Participating in skills competitions is a great way for apprentices to learn and develop as they get the opportunity to showcase their internationally recognised talent, something which really enhances their confidence and overall learning.”

Speaking of his experience with WorldSkills Ben added: “Attending the skills show along with leaders, partners, employers and sponsors was a great experience and one I will not forget.

“Having the opportunity to gain additional training, to that offered at Training 2000, has been invaluable and has definitely helped to enhance my future career prospects.”

Apprentices Recognised At Awards Ceremony

Dental apprentices have been recognised for their achievements at Training 2000’s dental awards.

The main winner on the night was 26 year-old Falah Aleem, from Blackburn, who received the Dental Nurse of the Year accolade at a glittering ceremony held by Training 2000 at Mytton Fold on Thursday 19 September.

Falah, who works at York Dental Care, said: “I am thrilled to have won this award and for all my hard work over the past two years to be acknowledged. This Apprenticeship has enabled me to gain a combination of practical work experience and a nationally-recognised qualification whilst earning money.”

John Worseley Dental Practice took home the prestigious Employer of the Year trophy.
John Worseley said, “It was a massive shock to win the Employer of the Year award, but really exciting! We have supported Apprenticeships for a number of years so to have been recognised in this way is wonderful.”

Gail Warburton, dental team leader at Training 2000, added: “The quality of learners on our dental programmes has been exceptional. All of tonight’s winners deserve their awards and it is great to celebrate their successes at an official ceremony.

“Achievements like this are a perfect example of how businesses and young people can work together to create a skilled workforce for the future, that meets specific requirements to that particular industry, and allows individuals to gain a nationally-recognised qualification.

“The training of apprentices is helping to equip young people with the necessary skills whilst ensuring that industry standards are achieved.”

Training 2000 Learners Provide Bags Of Support At Retail Outlet

A group of Training 2000 learners will get hands on retail experience when they help a local community interest organisation set up shop.

Eight youngsters have spent time over the past six weeks helping with research and design and setting up the ‘Mum’s The Word’ shop, which sells children’s pre-loved school uniforms and activity items at a fraction of the usual cost.

The team has been busy preparing for the ‘Back to School’ themed launch on Saturday 20th July 2013 and will help to dress the store with much-needed stock.

Co-founded by mumtrepreneurs Rachel Rhodes and Caroline Fatios, Mum’s The Word also provides a textile and footwear recycling service and The Mall Blackburn has provided them with a unit, equipment and marketing support free of charge, during its busiest time of year.

Organised through the training provider’s pre-apprenticeship programme, a scheme which equips people with the skills required to start their career, the group will get hands on retail experience to prepare them for the world of work.

Sarah Lang, Career Development officer at Training 2000, said: “We’re delighted to be helping Rachel and Caroline with their business venture, not only because it will benefit parents in the area, but also because it will provide a valuable opportunity for our pre-apprentices to gain valuable work experience.

“This partnership has given these young people a chance to develop their communication and team building skills, which will help them to secure a job and they are all really enjoying the experience.”

Rachel Rhodes, co-founder of Mum’s the Word, added: “The Training 2000 learners are a great help and we are extremely excited about what we envisage will be an extremely successful summer for the business.”

Loraine Jones, General Manager at The Mall Blackburn, concluded: “We are proud to support Mum’s The Word and look forward to introducing them to our customers at the ‘Back to School’ themed opening on Saturday 20th July.”

To donate any unwanted school uniforms and activity items, please call Caroline or Rachel on 07968 802824 or deposit in store, which is located at the unit next to Ditsch adjacent to Vodafone, nearby to the County Court entrance.

Cumbria Learners First To Complete E-Learning Course

An administration co-ordinator in children’s services at the Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust is among one of the first to complete a Level 4 NVQ through a learning assistant e-portfolio with Training 2000.
Twenty-nine-year-old Anna Penrose, from Carlisle, along with 5 other learners, completed their Diploma in Business and Administration Level 4 qualification by submitting evidence using an online e-portfolio that helps providers to deliver vocational qualifications more effectively.

Anna decided to study for a Level 4 NVQ in Business and Administration through her employer last year after spotting an advert in the staff magazine.

She says the experience has helped her to understand her role, improved her line management skills and helped her to solve problems more quickly and efficiently.

“This qualification has made me more aware of the work I do and made me think differently about my role and how I interact with colleagues,” she says. “The course really honed in on my problem-solving skills and this is an important part of my job.”

“I enjoyed the process and found it very easy to upload evidence to the Learning Assistant program and cross-reference the modules,” she says. “The assessors were very easy to contact and made the whole process very enjoyable and seamless.

“I had started NVQs in the past where the process was paper-based and I found it very arduous and too much work on top of my job. This model was very straightforward and the whole process was very well done.”

Lyn Moore, Anna’s line manager, is delighted with her development since she completed the course. “Anna is a star,” she says. “She has really developed her skills and is much more autonomous than she was before.

“She has put new systems in place to work with staff more efficiently and her ability to work through a problem is much stronger. I am really pleased with the progress she has made.”

Lyn says on-the-job training is becoming increasingly important to the Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust as pressure grows for hospitals to work more efficiently.

“The demands on our hospitals are ever-increasing and our support services underpin that,” she says. “By improving our performance management and streamlining our systems we can provide more consistency and efficiency.”

Anna is now planning to develop her skills further by studying for an NVQ Level 5 in Management. “The course helped to prepare me for the Level 5 qualification and I feel ready to take on the challenges that this course will bring,” she says.

“Some of the modules from my Level 4 NVQ can also be used as evidence for aspects of my Level 5, which will be very beneficial.”