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Breakfast event celebrates apprentice scheme success
BUSINESSES and council staff celebrated the success of a Wiltshire-wide campaign to get more people into apprenticeships at a breakfast event held in Salisbury on Thursday.
Wiltshire Council launched the year-long campaign to match 1,000 apprentices to local businesses in July 2012 and has exceeded its goal, with 1,157 apprenticeships started, involving 302 employers.
The businesses ranged from retailers and engineering companies, to IT and communication businesses and schools, and 50 per cent of the businesses involved either hadn’t had an apprentice before or hadn’t had one for a long time.
At a business breakfast at the Guildhall, the council and its partners heard an inspirational talk from Sugar’s first Tim Campbell.
Mr Campbell won the first series of the BBC show The Apprentice and worked for Lord Sugar’s company Amstrad for two years before leaving to set up the Bright Ideas Trust, giving young entrepreneurs a chance to start up in business. He also became a social enterprise ambassador as part of a Government initiative to apply modern business solutions to social and environmental problems and was awarded an MBE last year for services to enterprise culture.
He said: “We’ve heard some phenomenal results. The achievements you have had are what real apprenticeships are about. The number of young people becoming unemployed is increasing and we have to do something about that.”
Mr Campbell said how people see apprenticeships needs to change; it’s not just about tradesmen anymore. He said the results of the campaign were fantastic and now the message needs to be spread. Staff from local defence company QinetiQ, which relies on apprenticeships to recruit talent to the highly skilled positions it has, spoke about the value of apprenticeships, and there were also updates on what support is available for young people.
For more information on the apprenticeships campaign go to enterprisewiltshire.
n See our In Business supplement on October 31 for more from the business breakfast.
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