The launch of an employer-backed scheme designed to revolutionise the future of engineering in the UK will see students at a Midlands secondary school swap the classroom for real world experience.
In partnership with the Midlands school, Birmingham-based multi-disciplinary engineering solutions company, adi Group, has unveiled a pre-apprenticeship qualification for 14-16 year olds and its first contingent of 12 students.
Aimed at those students who are potentially looking toward a hands-on engineering career, the pre-apprenticeship qualification will offer practical experience and employability skills.
Occupying 10% of their overall GCSE curriculum time, the North Bromsgrove High School students will spend half a day a week in a live workshop at adi’s headquarters in Birmingham.
The pre-apprenticeship is reportedly the first of its kind in the UK, and aims to help close the skills gap by introducing and inspiring young people to the exciting opportunities offered by the engineering sector.
The adi Group first forged ties with the school through the Business in the Community (BITC) ‘Business Class’ programme which helps to create mutually beneficial school-business partnerships.
Business Class is a flagship programme for BITC, with its overall vision being to ‘help prevent social background predicting a young person’s success at school and beyond’.
Over the past three years, adi has supported students at the Midlands secondary school in exploring their options and promoting engineering as an exciting and rewarding career path. The partnership has also been recognised as a primary example of best practice by the CBI West Midlands.
Headmaster of North Bromsgrove High School, Dave Hadley-Pryce explained: “We have put together this new qualification as part of our efforts to respond to a growing need in education to prepare students for the broad spectrum of career opportunities available to them after they leave school.
“We have a strong bond with adi after having worked with them for the last three years, and have found a great deal of synergy in terms of the vision we both have that a hands-on career in engineering is a valuable and rewarding path to take.”
CEO of adi Group, Alan Lusty added: “The UK is known for its world class engineering, and we’re committed to inspiring the next generation of hands-on engineers in order to help address the skills gap.
“What’s more, we believe our pre-apprenticeship qualification is creating a comprehensive model which other schools, employers and members of BITC will be able to replicate. Our hope is that in due course, similar qualifications will be implemented across the country, raising youth interest in engineering throughout the UK.”