School leavers, people wishing to make a career change and employers are being encouraged to join drop-in sessions on apprenticeships this week at County Hall in Trowbridge.

Wiltshire Council employment and skills service and Wiltshire Careers are hosting ‘drop ins’ throughout National Apprenticeship Week (4 to 8 March). They will be on hand to provide vital information on apprenticeships and the Wiltshire Council apprenticeship programme. There is no need to book. Stands will be manned from 10am to 4:30pm but all materials will be available outside of these hours.

Figures recently released for apprenticeship starts for the quarter 1 2018/19 (August-October) of 1,710 have shown a 21.3% rise on increase in starts across Wiltshire compared to the same period in 2017/18, especially in advanced and higher apprenticeships. These reflect the direction seen nationally.

Laura Mayes, cabinet member for education and skills, said, “Apprenticeships can be the gateway to a fulfilling career. We benefit greatly from the fresh perspectives our apprentices offer at Wiltshire Council. Taking on an apprentice can be a real asset to employers and I’d encourage everyone who has interest in finding out more, to come to these sessions.”

Wiltshire Council currently has 157 apprentices across 17 different types of apprenticeships.

Nathalie Smith, apprenticeship and training coordinator at Wiltshire Council, added, “Our apprentices work in a range of areas and they are guaranteed a job at the end of their training.”

Apprentice Sara Lee, said, “My role is based in human resources and organisational development. As an apprentice organisational development assistant, I am supporting our local community by ensuring learners have access to training courses to develop their knowledge and skills. Once I have successfully completed my level 3 business and administration apprenticeship, I will have a permanent role at Wiltshire Council.”

Faye Williams, who is currently taking the apprenticeship programme, said, “I am doing a Level 3 business admin apprenticeship in the support and safeguarding team. I applied for an apprenticeship at Wiltshire Council because the package suited me better than other employers. I enjoy flexible working and Wiltshire rewards”

The Employment and Skills service with colleagues at Higher Futures support business of all sizes to develop an apprenticeship programme, help with recruitment and upskill existing employees through a series of training programmes and apprenticeship options, many funded through the extensive partnership network.

The Work Wiltshire website is also a one stop shop for education, employment and skills information and support. For more details, click here.

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