“No cap to where you can progress if you do an apprenticeship” say new Skills Minister, Nick Boles MP

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Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College visited by new Minister for Skills and Equalities, Nick Boles MP

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Nick Boles MP, the new Minister and Skills and Equalities, visited the College’s Ealing campus to talk to students, staff and employers about apprenticeships. He was joined by Ealing and Acton MP Angie Bray.

The minister met with the College’s business and administration apprentices to talk about their experiences on their programmes. In what was the Minister’s first visit to a further education college since his appointment, he also met with several of the College’s key partners in providing apprenticeship opportunities.

Speaking at the campus, the Minister thanked staff and employers for their work in delivering apprenticeships and said it was important providers continue to “make sure everybody understands how brilliant apprenticeships can be for young people”. He said there was “no cap to where you can progress if you do an apprenticeship.”

Angie Bray MP, who recently supported the launch of an apprenticeship fair at the College, said: “I am a firm believer in the value of apprenticeships and so it was great for the Minister to come to Ealing to see the excellent work taking place at the College. The apprentices we spoke to today are a prime example of the positive impact of apprenticeship programmes. Young people are passionate about getting into work and getting the skills they need to get on so it’s great see apprenticeships take off.”

The College’s business and administration apprentices work for a wide range of organisations. 26 year old Casey Ruff, who works in human resources for Hammersmith and Fulham Council, said it was the right option for people who wanted to earn as they learn: “A lot of people don’t want to just study, they want to earn money as soon as they’ve left school so they can go out and do things for themselves. An apprenticeship allows you to gain the qualification while earning money so you feel more like an adult. It’s the best of both worlds.”

Employers working with the College also had an opportunity to share their experiences with the Minister. Elaine McCulloch from K10, an organisation which specialises in providing apprentices for the construction industry, said: “We have a fabulous relationship with the College and together we’ve come up with a flexible delivery model that’s more in tune with what employers want. We’ve grown very quickly from 30 to 50 apprentices out of the Acton campus and we’ll continue to grow that number by keeping our offer fresh and flexible.”

The College currently offers eight different apprenticeship pathways, which include building services and supported teaching in schools. More information about apprenticeships and details about how to get in touch can be found at http://www.wlc.ac.uk/apprenticeships/

Source: Ealing, Hammersmith & West London College

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