From education to employment

Apprenticeship diversity is going from strength to strength

To mark the growing impact of the Apprenticeship Diversity Champions Network (ADCN), a short film featuring Sue Husband, Director of the National Apprenticeship Service and Helen Grant MP, is being launched.

Set up to champion apprenticeships and diversity amongst employers, BT, Shropshire Council, Nottingham City Homes, the Royal Air Force, Walsall Council, Vets4Pets, My KindaFuture, Colas Rail, Christeyns and Bombardier have all recently joined the network.

These employers have all committed to encourage more people from underrepresented groups – including individuals with a learning difficulty or disability, from disadvantaged areas, from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities and Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Manufacturing (STEM) careers – to consider apprenticeships.

Existing members, including the BBC, Kier Group, Yorkshire Water, Rolls Royce, Glaxo Smith Klein (GSK) and BAE Systems are already making an impact on diversity in apprenticeships, through positively promoting the benefits of apprenticeships with visits to thousands of schools and looking at the recruitment, selection, and progression of apprentices.

Helen Grant MP and Chair of the Apprenticeship Diversity Champions Network, said:

Apprenticeships offer a real ladder of life changing opportunity to individuals, allowing each to reach their full potential through committed employment and earning whilst they learn. It is crucially important that these opportunities are made available to people of all backgrounds.

Each employer who joins our network is sending out a loud message to other employers and individuals about the transformative impact apprenticeships can have on business, engendering loyalty and delivering the bespoke skills required for their workforce.

I am delighted to welcome our new employers to our growing network, together we will make a difference by creating the most diverse and inclusive apprenticeships possible.

Steven Stewart, Apprenticeship Programme Lead from GSK added:

As soon as I heard about ADCN I thought it was a fantastic mission and I really wanted to be part of it. As someone who did not have a straightforward path to reach my current role, I am passionate about supporting people from diverse backgrounds and helping them succeed.

I have seen the benefits of having a diverse apprenticeship programme at GSK and we are continually working hard to ensure that our scheme is accessible to everybody. One of our pledges is to work with experts to review social mobility and see how we can benchmark this to understand our current state. I am looking forward to learning from the group and taking this knowledge back to GSK to support our programme”.

Employers interested in joining the Apprenticeships Diversity Champions Network should click here.

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