Degree Apprenticeships – A vision for growth
Jan 05, 2018
On the 14 December, the University’s Degree Apprenticeship Board held a workshop with key internal stakeholders including Deans and Directors of Professional services to set the vision and strategy for growing this key area of business over the next 3-5 years.
Vice Chancellor, Professor Helen Marshall, introduced the workshop underlining how our apprenticeship offer was strongly aligned to our ICZ strategy and emphasised how diversification of the range and types of programmes we deliver was key to our growth as a University.
The Vice-Chancellor also highlighted how the development of higher and degree apprenticeships reflects the Government’s Industrial Strategy to plug sector skills gaps and produce more highly-skilled and technical graduates.
Professor Sheila Pankhurst, Chair of the Degree Apprenticeship Board introduced Steve Seddon, from engineering recruitment experts The Morson Group. Steve spoke passionately about his own journey, starting out as a young apprentice and working his way up to Client Services Director at Morson. He also highlighted the critical skills gaps within engineering, adding: ‘I think degree apprenticeships are the perfect model to create a talent pipeline and allow employees to earn whilst they learn’.
Students Jack Hook, a Quantity Surveying apprentice at Met-Excel and Bethany Carr, a Biomedical Science apprentice in the NHS and her manager, Julie Miller also gave short but inspiring talks, championing the positive benefits of the apprenticeship route to both individuals and employers. Jack and Bethany explained how useful it was to be able to apply their theoretical learning to the workplace. Both felt their long term career would benefit from studying in this way and loved the fact they were earning a salary at the same time. Jack and Bethany were united in their view that more and more young people would start to choose the apprenticeship pathway as a route to studying higher education, in particular as awareness in schools and amongst parents begins to increase.
The session included table discussions around degree apprenticeships at the University and it was great to hear the thoughts of Directors, Deans of Schools and senior academics as to what was currently available in the way of apprenticeships and their ambitions for further developing and growing the University’s apprenticeships offer for the future.
Michelle Amos Head of Marketing updated the Board as to our market position, John Whitlow Chief Information Officer talked about the systems and processes required for apprenticeships, and Louise Edwards-Holland, Director of HR and Organisational Development spoke about further developing our capacity and capability as an institution to deliver such programmes.
There are currently more than 80 apprentices on 14 programmes in five Schools across the University and the Degree Apprenticeship Team are working with around 40 employers across a number of key industry sectors. With continuing strong demand from both employers and individuals, the University is expected to have over 200 apprentices on UoS programmes by the end of the 2018/19 academic year.
For those of you who would like to find out more about higher and degree apprenticeships at the University, please click here. You can also join one of the Degree Apprenticeship Team’s monthly staff development workshops which can be booked via Advantage.
The next session is due to take place towards the end of January so please keep an eye out on Advantage to book on to this session. Alternatively, if you have any queries around our offer, please do not hesitate to get in contact with the Degree Apprenticeships Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org.