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16th February 2015

University aims to hire 100 apprentices by the end of the year

Commended for its recent apprentice program, The University of Manchester is doubling the number of vacancies for 2015

The University of Manchester has launched its 2015 apprenticeship campaign which will encourage managers across the organization to take on apprentices when appropriate vacancies arise.

This move comes in the light of praise received from the National Apprenticeship Service which has commended Manchester for being the first university in England to commit to directly recruiting apprentices to its workforce on a sizeable scale.

After last year’s successful 44-pupil debut, University bosses have set a target of at least 100 apprentices in post by the end of the year.

Roles available include receptionists, accounts assistants, administration assistants, workshop and laboratory technicians and chefs.

Steve Grant, Assistant Director of Human Resources and lead on the initiative, said: “I have been hugely encouraged by the success of our 2014 intake of apprentices.

“The feedback I have received from our apprentices’ line managers, and from the apprentices themselves, is that the program is hugely successful and that we could and should do more. I will be working with the National Apprenticeship Service and University colleagues to ensure we build upon this success.

“This is as much about what we can do as a major employer in the region for young people, or those wishing to take a different career path, as it is about changing the profile of our workforce, investing in skills development and bringing in new people with fresh ideas.

“It is clear that our apprentices are making a significant impact and I would encourage other employers in the region to actively consider recruiting an apprentice.”

According to calculations by the National Audit Office, this initiative should add £10m to the regional economy. This will further consolidate the University’s position as the most significant employer in the city.

The University’s President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, who recently met some of the new recruits, said: “I was really pleased to be able to meet with a cross-section of our first cohort of apprentices and was impressed by their enthusiasm and commitment to the University and our ambitions.

“It’s important that we invest in future talent and equip people with the skills universities and other employers require.”
Claire Blott, Deputy Director for the National Apprenticeship Service North West, said: “We are hugely grateful for The University of Manchester’s continued support and commitment to apprenticeships.

“Apprenticeships are a great way for young people to earn while they learn in a real job, gaining a real qualification; setting them on the road to success in their chosen career.

“For the university, hiring apprentices is a proven way of attracting new talent and developing a motivated, skilled and diverse workforce. We hope its 2015 campaign is a great success.”

An example of the programs success is Jamie Scott, a former soldier who joined the university as an apprentice chef last year.

Scott, 35, had been working as a scaffolder since leaving the army in 2000. However, after a serious car accident which made him go through a number of medical operations, he was advised by doctors to stop work involving heavy lifting.

He said: “I had always enjoyed cooking as a teenager and the scheme allowed me to train as a chef, while getting valuable work experience in the university’s kitchens.

“It was invaluable to see what a professional kitchen looked like and how it operated. The apprenticeship has changed my life.”

Now a father-of-two, Scott has acquired National Vocational Qualification levels 1 and 2 and is working towards his level 3 with Trafford College. He was recently named apprentice of the year there, while at the same time working in the kitchens at Owens Park halls of residence.

Those interested in applying for the program should visit the National Apprenticeship Service website for more information.

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