|The Greater Manchester Combined Authority has been working closely with the National Apprenticeship Service, local employers and four other city regions to promote the take-up of apprenticeships in under-represented groups.
On Monday (November 19) the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, supported by National Apprenticeship Service and The University of Manchester held a conference for employers and training providers to highlight the work carried out as part of the project and to share best practice.
This follows on from the national ‘5 Cities Project’ launched back in March by Skills Minister Anne Milton to encourage Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) and those from disadvantage backgrounds to consider the apprenticeship route.
Since then Greater Manchester has been demonstrating how apprenticeships can transform the skills landscape to ensure that there are enough high quality opportunities for millions of people, all ages and backgrounds.
Across the region work has been done to help break down the barriers and perceptions of apprenticeships with a view to encourage more employers to be inclusive, and show that apprenticeships offer an alternative, high quality education with a clear path to employment. This sits alongside the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham’s vision to create a UCAS-style application platform to support young people to make informed career choices about all routes.
The Mayor said: “We’re working hard to make sure Greater Manchester is known as a place where everyone can get on in life and get into work, whatever your circumstances, background or aspirations.
“We’ve already started putting some great work into practice but we want even more businesses to get involved and help us continue to promote fairness, equality and inclusion within the workplace, and specifically around apprenticeships.”
Conference chair, MBE Steve Grant from The University of Manchester said: “The University is very proud to be chosen to host and chair this conference. As a major employer with a significant apprenticeship programme, we are committed to ensuring that our apprentices reflect the diverse communities which make up Greater Manchester.
“22 per cent of our apprentices have a Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) heritage, so it’s great to see so many organisations in the room who are working towards the same goal.
“We will continue to work with our apprenticeship training providers, communities and other partners to grow our skills base by tapping in to the huge amount of talent available in communities across the region.”