Vince Cable announces “higher apprenticeships”

Vince Cable announces “higher apprenticeships”

City and Islington College is delighted to be working with the New Engineering Foundation and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to develop and deliver the new Higher Apprenticeship in Engineering Environmental Technologies (HE-EET).

The scheme, which was announced today by Business Secretary Vince Cable, has been designed to equip learners with a broad awareness of environmental technologies across sectors and the sustainability challenges in the manufacturing, construction, energy, logistics and other engineering and scientific sectors. The apprentices will also focus on the specialism related to their employer, gaining in-depth knowledge and growing their ability to contribute to research and future developments in their sector.

The HA-EET will be a work-based learning programme, providing skills and qualifications at Level 4.  The model ensures a good balance between practical,
work-related knowledge and the transferable skills needed for a sustainable and rewarding career, with opportunities to progress to higher level job roles.

Demand from industry is central to the entire programme and employers will be involved in its development through a pilot year. Starting in January 2013, the HA-EET will operate with an initial cohort of 120 learners across the country. The course will take two years to complete with additional groups of learners joining at regular intervals.

Features of the City and Islington College/ NEF Higher Apprenticeship model include: Multiple entry routes (including from Level 3 vocational courses, A Levels, HNC or equivalent qualifications/experience); specialist modules provide qualified staff into a variety of sectors including energy, construction, logistics and manufacturing while embracing  the skills and competencies that are common across a variety of engineering and technical industries; fosters innovation as a valuable skill for the employer and the apprentice’s career and widens participation by enabling various entry routes and creating a new qualification route for existing employees as well as new recruits.
Having been asked to manage this project in May, the College and NEF are moving rapidly to ensure the scheme successfully meets the requirements of employers. The project will involve development of an innovative, flexible apprenticeship framework and the creation of a sustainable support network for providers. The curriculum is being assembled by embracing both existing units and qualifications from a range of sources and developing new material to address specific industry requirements. This includes a range of e-learning modules covering installation and maintenance of environmental technology systems, for example.

Principal of City and Islington College, Frank McLoughlin CBE said: “City and Islington College is very pleased to be leading the development of this new Higher Apprenticeship framework in Engineering Environmental Technologies. In uncertain economic times such as these, it is important that we continue to innovate to ensure that the demand for highly qualified staff in expanding industries such as Environmental Engineering is met. We also need to ensure that students are able to take their first steps in their future careers.”NEF CEO, Professor Sa’ad Medhat said: “This apprenticeship framework is timely and essential, tackling the identified skills shortages facing employers now.

It will also play a big part in preparing the UK to meet both the environmental and economic challenges facing the country and indeed internationally. The NEF is delighted to be working with City and Islington College, aligning our specialist experience in the technology sector and vocational training with the college’s proven expertise in delivering successful, large-scale projects.”

The NEF’s Director of Programmes, Dr Sarah Peers added: “With the Higher apprenticeship in Engineering Environmental Technologies we will be combining
advanced specialist training with broad skills development. This is a training package that employers want and we are already working with many companies large and small to ensure it meets their needs. A workforce that has the ability to adapt, innovate and contribute to rapidly developing technologies will be a major competitive advantage and this opportunity presents a huge incentive to employers to be involved in developing the model.  We are assembling a steering group and encourage employers to engage with us as this training programme evolves.”

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