It’s National Apprenticeship Week! – Solving Skills Gaps with Postive Relationships

Posted by on Mar 16, 2016 in Blog | 0 comments

It’s National Apprenticeship Week! – Solving Skills Gaps with Postive Relationships

In 2016 alone a predicted 96,300 new engineers, scientists and technologists are needed to replace the retirements in industry. A trio of Leicestershire Cares partners has come up with a unique formula proven to aid the industry skills gap.

Leicestershire Cares introduced member company Nylacast to Beaumont Leys School in 2013, through their numerous Employability Projects which have concentrated on the CBI’s employability definitions. The school provides a fantastic vetting service and supports students through their first apprenticeship interviews as part of Leicestershire Cares’ Interview Technique project with successful students coming back into school as employees to support employability activities.

Some of the joint efforts and activities which take place across the academic year range from onsite careers fairs and industry work experience placements through to site tours for staff, pupils and parents and even “Introneering”, a new concept created by Nylacast to deliver 1 week placements and condensed apprenticeship tasters to students thinking of entering the world of engineering.

The partnership between the 3 local organisations has since developed into Beaumont Leys School becoming a feed school for Nylacast’s award winning engineering apprenticeships.  Over the years this combined teamwork and dedicated drive to provide fruitful opportunities to local students has resulted in the engineering firm taking on 4 – 6 apprentices per annum directly from classroom to state of the art manufacturing facilities via their dedicated Engineering Academy.

Gail Brown, Education Manager at Leicestershire Cares  said, “Upon asking a year 9 student at Beaumont Leys School what they would like to do after leaving  school,  he quickly replied ‘Work at Nylacast’, which I think is testimony to the relationship for a company which would not be a household name for these students.  Nylacast and Beaumont Leys school are beacons of good practice and commitment to the future of young people.”

The strong educational foundation provided by Beaumont Leys School, coupled with the many Leicestershire Cares Employability Projects and Nylacast’s commitment to bridging the skills gap proves to continuously provide enthusiastic, dedicated students and apprentices with the hunger to succeed in developing their careers alongside gaining higher education.  One of these apprentices is Dale Bartram who said, “There are always new components and challenges each day which allows me to really enhance my skills and knowledge from the start, and there are always new skills to be learnt.”

Colin Cole, Futures Advisor at Beaumont Leys School commented, “I have seen a greater interest in Engineering in the School.  I think Nylacast is unique in that they are willing to work with sixteen year old school leavers as apprentices, who sometimes are not the ‘finished mature person’ but nonetheless given time and training have the skill set to go on to become the next generation of engineers given the nurturing and  inspiring environment wrapped around them by the company.”

Dale, alongside Nylacast’s other apprentices and graduates also partakes in company and school events to provide firsthand experience and insight into apprenticeships as a career path for younger students.  This includes going back into school to support with the same Employability Projects which developed into the foundation of his engineering career.

Ian Mallabone, Nylacast Group HR & Training Manager commented, “It is vital that more companies open doors to local schools and help to bridge the gap between Industry and Academia. As a business we are very passionate about supporting the local community and if we give an opportunity to just one student or even guide them to make a more decisive career choice then the work that we do with the school has served a purpose. The relationship that we have built up over the past few years has benefited both Nylacast and the school but more importantly the people within them.”

Nylacast continue to grow their training & development programmes locally and have begun recruiting for 4 to 6 CNC Engineering Apprenticeship positions with an August 2016 start date.  The company which also launched its blossoming graduate development programme in January 2015 will also be recruiting for new graduate materials engineer candidates in 12 months’ time.

Gail Brown

Education Manager

Leicestershire Cares

March 2016

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