The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) is urging young people receiving their GCSE results to consider apprenticeships as an excellent path towards being an engineer.
‘Many school leavers may be better off considering apprenticeships,’ said Gareth James, head of education at the IET. ‘Not only do they represent good all-round training for those wanting to avoid the costs associated with higher education, but they actually represent an opportunity to place apprentices far ahead of new graduates.
‘As well as the chance to study for a degree as part of their programme, apprentices also receive hands-on industry experience and earn employability skills, such as team working, which many employers say university graduates still lack.’
Heather Green, director of Apprenticeships at Skills Solutions, the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce’s accredited vocational training provider, added: ‘With thousands of teenagers now considering their next steps following this week’s GCSE results, apprenticeships will be high on the agenda as a viable alternative career path, creating a pool of talented young individuals.
‘This is a golden opportunity for organisations to employ and train bright, enthusiastic individuals, with the additional benefit of being wholly or partially subsidised for doing so by the extra £222m the government has allocated to fund vocational training.’
The call from the IET, Europe’s largest professional body of engineers and technicians, comes as it has seen a 50 per cent increase in applications for its scholarships and grants on last year.