Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership and Worcestershire County Council are joining the annual week-long celebration of apprenticeships across England.
From Monday 3-9 February 2020 as part of the National Apprenticeship Week 2020, the organisations will be taking time to recognise and applaud apprenticeship success stories from across Worcestershire as well as country-wide using the hashtags #NAW2020, LookBeyond and #WorcsApprentice.
In Worcestershire, this year’s campaign will include several past apprentices telling their story of ‘Where Are They Now?’ which will feature middle and senior managers who started their careers as apprentices.
Emma Jeffries, HR Manager at Southco who commenced her career at the company in 1996 as a modern apprentice said, “An apprenticeship really helped me to get started in my career, getting me into a business and the opportunity for ‘real life’ work experience and earning my own money whilst studying for a qualification. Here at Southco (where I continue to work since my Apprenticeship) we see our employees as our biggest asset and we see real value in Apprenticeships to support the existing and future growth of the business. We are creating a pipeline of talent by enabling us to mould and develop our own Toolmakers, Manufacturing Engineers and managers for example to continue that growth and drive our culture and values.”
Matt Bingham, Production Engineering Manager at Titan Steel Wheels Limited in Kidderminster, who commenced his career 24 years ago as an apprentice said, “I left school at 16 years old with 10 GCSEs and really enjoyed the practical opportunities that my apprenticeship gave me; gaining the necessary qualifications at Kidderminster College plus the real hands-on experience in a proper working environment at Titan. Of particular value was working alongside experienced engineers and benefitting from their years of knowledge and experience. At Titan we still strongly support apprenticeships within the business, recruiting 3-4 every year and thoroughly recommend apprenticeships to anyone as the first step or to retrain in their career.”
Current and future apprentices will also be celebrated throughout the week, with engagement and events in schools and colleges. Many current and former apprentices will go back to school to tell their story, attracting the next generation of apprentices, so they too can fire up their future career.
This year’s week-long campaign will also be taken to social media where both past & present apprentices and local businesses are being encouraged to share a selfie showing their support for Apprenticeships. Last year’s campaign was received well amongst the local business community with numerous employers adding their support online, including: OGL Computer, Buzz Electrical, Sencon UK and Morgan Advanced Materials.
To complement this, the campaign was even recognised by Government as a national exemplar for promoting apprenticeships.
During the past year, the Worcestershire Apprenticeships Hub was able to advise over 25,000 young people about apprenticeships in visits and activities with local schools. Last year also marked the highest attended Worcestershire Apprenticeship Show to date with over 3,000 people attending to engage with local businesses and training providers.
Gary Woodman, Chief Executive of Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “Apprenticeships are an exciting option for any young person to earn and learn. Worcestershire has a thriving training environment and employers are looking to invest in developing their workforce. Businesses in the county report that attracting and retaining talent is one of their fundamental barriers to growth, therefore investing in apprenticeships as part of a workforce training and development plan is an excellent step to success. I would encourage anyone interested in hiring or becoming an apprentice to visit the Worcestershire Apprenticeships website to find out more.”
To get involved with the Worcestershire Apprenticeships campaign use the hashtag #WorcsApprentice and tweet @WorcsApprentice on social media.