There’s so much more to apprenticeships than you might think and National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) provides a great opportunity to celebrate what they have to offer.
NAW takes place this year from Monday 4 to Friday 8 March. The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (the Institute) will be drawing attention to a different apprenticeship each day. Each of these apprenticeships is in an area where employers had identified skills shortages and the Institute worked with these employers to set up high-quality apprenticeships. To demonstrate the breadth of opportunity apprenticeships now offer, these range from entry level two right up to degree level.
We will be highlighting apprenticeships from Level 2 to Level 6/7 over the week starting on Monday with the Level 2 Leather Craftsperson apprenticeship.
We recently visited Jennifer Hollidge, UK Production Training Co-ordinator at Mulberry, who was part of the Leather Craftsperson Trailblazer. During our visit we spoke to both Jennifer and some fantastic leather crafts apprentices about apprenticeships and how they are benefitting them at Mulberry.
In 2005 we recognised that the factory was facing the prospect of a skills shortage with more than 50% of workers over 50, and 13% over 65. With plans to expand the factory, we needed to secure our future by reducing the skills shortage and rebalance the age distribution. This was the inception of Mulberry’s apprenticeship scheme.
We are passionate about ensuring that the craft of leatherworking is handed down to future generations of craftspeople and believe that our apprenticeship has a positive impact on the business, the individual and the community.
In the thirteen years since its inception, more than 90 apprentices have completed the programme. Some of which have gone on to apply their skills and knowledge in different roles across the business such as; Product Development, Planning and Implementation. One of our Leather Goods Manufacturing apprentices from 2013, Harrison Malik is now Mulberry’s Development Technician and has represented the Company at special events internationally.
Jennifer Hollidge, UK Production Training Co-ordinator
We are spending the day with the Heritage Skills Academy, talking to staff and apprentices delivering and learning the off the job training for the Heritage Engineering Technician apprenticeship. Look out for updates on our Twitter and Instagram channels throughout the day
We recently visited Framestore which is a visual effects and content studio and spoke to Amy Smith who is head of talent. We also spoke to a number of their apprentices undertaking the visual effects apprenticeships.
We spent the day with two Marine Pilot Apprentices at Associated British Ports in Immingham. It was brilliant to speak to them about their role and see them in action at the ports. You can read more about marine apprenticeships in our blog post.
It is International Women's Day and the final day of National Apprenticeship Week. We want to celebrate the day by dedicating it to brilliant female apprentices in science. Hear from Hajra Bibi, a research scientist apprentice at GSK who is also a member of the Institute's apprentice panel. We also spoke to Georgia Cresswell, a Pathology apprentice at MedImmune who is also on the panel - hear from Georgia on our blog.