Friday, 29 June 2012

Higher Apprenticeships in engineering and aviation announced

Laura Hopperton at Eureka, the site for engineering design

The government has announced plans to create an additional 4,230 Higher Apprenticeships in sectors including aviation, low carbon engineering and space engineering.

The news has been welcomed by industry and employer organisations such as the CBI and the EEF.

“By radically increasing the number of degree level apprenticeships we are putting practical learning on a level footing with academic study,” said Skills Minister John Hayes. “Doing an apprenticeship should be one of the best gateways to university level study. Through the Higher Apprenticeship Fund we are creating 23,000 places for young people to take degree-equivalent Higher Apprenticeships in sectors like space engineering and renewable energy.”

At the CBI, director for employment and skills Neil Carberry said that building a higher-level skills base had to be an essential part of a successful plan for long term growth. He commented: “Future skills shortages in key sectors could hold back our economic performance, so boosting higher level apprenticeships now is the right thing to do. Sectors like high-technology and science-based advanced manufacturing and IT are a good place to start. Young people need to know that higher apprenticeships are a great route to a successful career, as they can build higher level skills while learning on-the-job with an employer.”

Tim Thomas, head of employment affairs at the manufacturers’ organisation EEF, welcomed government efforts to increase the number of opportunities available. He said: “Employers view vocational and academic qualifications and skills as complementary to one another, and higher apprenticeships are becoming a hybrid of both. As such they provide a viable solution to employers’ increasing desire for practical and academic skills. However, we must ensure that young people are receiving the right careers advice that demonstrates apprenticeships can lead to highly successful careers in manufacturing.”

My emphasis!

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