Prominent industry leaders including Airbus, BMW and Sellafield are among the companies to have hired candidates from a foundational ECITB (Engineering Construction Industry Training Board) course.
The organisation’s ITEC (Introduction to Engineering Construction) course is a 10-month programme designed to prepare learners in the basic principles of engineering ahead of apprenticeships and other entry roles. Delivered by 11 colleges and training providers across England, ITEC aims to provide the underlying core knowledge that industry often claims can be lacking in recent grads and school leavers.
Last year, 69 per cent of ITEC learners progressed into related jobs or further training. Since successfully completing the ITEC in June, more than fifty of this year’s cohort of 154 participants have already progressed into apprenticeships.
“The number and stature of the companies recruiting from our pool of graduates show the value of the ITEC course to industry and is a ringing endorsement of the work of our training providers,” said Chris Claydon, chief executive of ECITB.
“The programme gives youngsters a solid grounding to commence a career in a wide range of engineering disciplines, and we want more engineering construction employers to benefit from this talent pool. The demand for new recruits to the engineering construction workforce is set to rise significantly over the next decade and the ECITB ITEC Programme will pay its part in helping to fill that skills gap.”
Launched in 2015 to offset the drop in apprenticeships offered across the industry, the ITEC offers all of the year one components of a formal apprenticeship and is equivalent to the first year of a Level 3 apprenticeship. Learners gain a nationally-recognised engineering knowledge qualification, 10 weeks of practical skills training and the industry standard CCNSG safety passport.
“Having access to ITEC learners broadens our recruitment options, and a real plus point is these young people now have a better idea of what type of engineer they want to become,” said Donna Connor, head of Education and Skills at Sellafield Ltd.
“It’s also great for the wider community as those who don’t secure an apprenticeship first time round are encouraged to continue to develop and enhance their engineering skills, so that they stand a stronger chance in the future.”