October 22, 2020, by bbzswh

University of Nottingham doubles its number of apprentices in 2020

The University of Nottingham has doubled the number of apprentices joining its degree apprenticeship programmes during 2020. Despite the challenging environment in which many businesses are now operating, the programmes continue to prove a popular route to workforce development. As organisations invest in skills to navigate uncertain markets, using the apprenticeship levy to recruit and retain talent is an attractive option.

“In these challenging times we are seeing more interest in the degree apprenticeship programmes, as businesses are looking to future-proof their workforces by bringing industry-specific skills into their organisations in a cost-effective way. The government also recognised the role that work-based learning will play in the recovery of the UK economy in its Plan for Jobs.” – Ruth Eccles, Head of Degree Apprenticeships, University of Nottingham.

The University launched its degree apprenticeship offer in 2018 with its Advanced Clinical Practitioner Degree Apprenticeship. Programmes offering work-based training in a range of industries soon followed with the University’s degree apprenticeships offer expanding to include architecture, laboratory science and senior leadership.

Nick Booth, Head of the Engineering Academy at Uniper, who are currently developing three of their Senior Leaders via the University’s Executive MBA Senior Leadership Degree Apprenticeship, explains:

“At Uniper we see value in apprenticeships at every level, from GCSE, all the way through to PhD.  We proactively discuss apprenticeships with our workforce during our recruitment process, and when exploring development opportunities with our employees. On-the-job training through apprenticeships can provide additional skills and experience that is not an option in some alternative study routes, which benefits the employer and the employee.”

In January 2020, the University was able to extend its degree apprenticeship offer to eligible small businesses who can benefit from 95% government co-investment.

TMV Architects, a small practice offering a range of architectural and design services, who have enrolled Architectural Assistant Ellie Stamp onto the Architect Degree Apprenticeship said:

“We welcomed the opportunity to retain a valued member of staff through the more affordable apprenticeship route. We were encouraged by the collaborative nature of Nottingham’s course as we implement student research into our current practice, which will in-turn enhance our projects. We look forward to progressing our relationship with the University of Nottingham and playing such a key role in Ellie’s architectural education.”

It’s not just businesses that are seeing the appeal of developing skills in this way. Ellie Ancliffe who has joined the Laboratory Scientist (Chemistry) Degree Apprenticeship from Nottingham-based Reach Separations said:

“Choosing to gain a degree via an apprenticeship rather than via the traditional route allows me to study and get paid at the same time. Exposure to a real workplace gives me a much greater appreciation of how my studies can shape my future career.”

Two new masters-level apprenticeships have been added to the University’s suite of degree apprenticeships in 2020 including the country’s first masters-level degree apprenticeship for veterinary surgeons and a bioinformatics degree apprenticeship which is delivered predominantly online. The University continues to expand its offer with a  Data Scientist Degree Apprenticeship due to start in 2021 and an Electro-mechanical Engineering programme currently in development.

If you would like to find out more about degree apprenticeships at the University of Nottingham visit nottingham.ac.uk/degree-apprenticeships or contact the Employer Engagement Team.

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