Since their launch in 2015, the interest and uptake of degree apprenticeships has been great.
Last month I was invited to speak at Universities UK Degree apprenticeships conference. The agenda was all about responding to the increased interest in degree apprenticeships. We also looked at the unprecedented challenges not only the sector is facing, but UK economy overall and making sure that degree apprenticeships remain high on the agenda.
My session focused on raising the profile of this apprenticeship route and the many benefits for employers and universities of engaging with secondary schools to promote degree apprenticeships to learners, including expanding opportunities for disadvantaged students and influencing awareness and perceptions.
I highlighted our Apprentice Connect programme’s successes and our next steps for its future: creating an e-learning module available to teachers and career advisers in the network. It’s a short but practical overview of what’s involved in an apprenticeship and the key things to consider. The lesson can be downloaded and delivered to students by a teacher. Students can also log on themselves and complete the lesson. A follow-up video call can be scheduled with a current apprentice to answer any questions and share their real life journey. Allowing us to reach more young people, particularly those who may face the most barriers to work.
‘With a continued push into the Higher Education market being a key commercial priority for us, it is essential that we listen, understand and contribute to the dialogue in this sector. Having several areas of the organisation, including the Foundation supporting events such as the UUK conference keeps us up to date with the latest developments for Degree Apprenticeships and speaking at this event really enables us to raise our profile as a thought leader within the skills sector.’Joe Bell, our Higher Education Partnership Manager