The Mayor of Sheffield City Region Dan Jarvis MP helped kick off National Apprenticeship Week today when he met degree apprentices at Sheffield Hallam University.
The Mayor met learners who are employees of Dixons Carphone and studying for a chartered manager degree apprenticeship at Sheffield Hallam’s business school.
He talked to the apprentices about what inspired them to take up this alternative route in to higher education before meeting staff from the University.
Dan Jarvis, Mayor of the Sheffield City Region, said: “It was great to meet so many young people today at the start of National Apprenticeship Week.
“Apprenticeships are crucial for equipping young people across the Sheffield City Region with the skills they need to help them achieve their full potential. They provide an opportunity for all young people to gain a degree and experience in world of work.
“We need to do all we can to ensure that our young people gain the skills and knowledge they need to lead successful and rewarding professional careers.”
The University opened its National Centre of Excellence for Degree Apprenticeships (NCEDA) in November last year and received a grant towards the project from the Sheffield City Region (SCR) Local Growth Fund to provide bespoke teaching space and IT equipment for hundreds of learners.
Conor Moss, director of NCEDA at Sheffield Hallam, said: “We were delighted to welcome the Mayor to help celebrate the start of National Apprenticeship Week and meet some of our apprentices to find out more about the work we are doing here, which has been supported by the Sheffield City Region Combined Authority.
“Sheffield Hallam has an ambition to become the world’s leading applied university with a focus on innovative and applied education.
“We have placed regional economic growth and social mobility at the heart of our strategy and as part of this commitment we have invested heavily in the development of one of the broadest degree apprenticeship portfolios in the UK, which has seen significant growth.
“We continue to identify and support potential apprentices from the most disadvantaged backgrounds in the region and match them with our vibrant SME businesses; plugging the skills gap in South Yorkshire and contributing the city region’s economic success.”
Sheffield Hallam University is one of the leading providers of degree apprenticeships in the country, with nearly 1,000 learners currently enrolled on a variety of courses. Degree apprenticeships are developed alongside employers to help address significant skills gaps in a number of sectors both regionally and nationally. These include highly specialist courses in engineering, digital solutions, construction and finance, underpinned by a range of management programmes.
The government’s National Apprenticeship Week runs from March 4-8. The week-long celebration of apprenticeships aims to bring the whole apprenticeship community together to celebrate the impact of apprenticeships on individuals, employers and the economy.
By 2021 Government will have invested over £12bn through the Local Growth Fund. There are 38 LEPs covering the whole of England, which are investing LGF money in a wide range of projects including transport, skills, business support, broadband, innovation and flood defences.