Businesses across the North East are being invited to find out more about degree apprenticeships during a series of events taking place at Northumbria University, Newcastle.
Government-backed degree apprenticeship qualifications allow students to gain a degree while working at the same time, with business of all sizes across a wide variety of sectors able to benefit from employing a degree apprentice.
Northumbria was one of the first UK universities to offer degree apprenticeships and is now running a number of advice and drop-in sessions explaining more about the qualifications and how they can add value to employers.
The events will also give businesses the chance to find out more about the Apprenticeship Levy, which is due to come into force on 1 April, and how it will impact on their organisation.
The first event takes place on Wednesday 29 March and is aimed at local SMEs, giving them an opportunity to find out more about new and existing degree apprenticeship opportunities offered by Northumbria.
This includes the Digital and Technology Solutions programme, which was launched in 2015, and Northumbria’s new Chartered Manager and Chartered Surveyor programmes, which will run from this September.
Because the apprenticeship levy only applies to organisations with a payroll of £3 million or more, many SMEs will not be affected. This means they can put their existing staff, as well as newly-recruited apprentices, onto degree apprenticeship programmes with at least 90% of the course fee, and in some cases the full amount, provided through government funding.
The event, which takes place from 8am to 10am at the University’s business and law building, will also feature a taster session on management decision making, as well as one-to-one meetings to discuss specific requirements.
The Apprenticeship Levy will be discussed in more detail during the second event, which takes place on Thursday 27 April and is aimed at public sector and charity sector organisations, many of which will bepaying the apprenticeship levy and reviewing their workforce development needs as a result.
Speakers at the event will includeMichael Brodie, Director of North East Regional Employers’ Organisation (NEREO), who will discuss degree apprenticeships and the public sector, and Karen Clark of the Skills Funding Agency, who will discuss the Apprenticeship Levy in more detail.
The event takes place from 9.15am to 12.30pm in Northumbria’s business and law building, with opportunities to ask specific questions or discuss programmes afterwards.
In addition to these events, Northumbria is holding degree apprenticeship drop-in sessions between 9am and 12pm on Tuesday 4 April, during which employers can discuss the Digital and Technology Solutions, Chartered Manager and Chartered Surveyor degree apprenticeships in more detail with programme leaders, to address specific questions and explore how they might fit with their workforce development needs.
This will also be a chance for businesses to find out more about the Architecture, Construction, Accountancy, Law (Solicitor) and Health and Social Care degree apprenticeship programmes which Northumbria hopes to launch in the future.
Last year Northumbria announced it would be investing £240,000 in expanding its degree apprenticeship courses, after securing funding of £140,000 from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). It aims to provide almost 300 degree apprenticeship places by 2020.
It was also recently announced that Northumbria has been accepted onto the government’s newly formed register of apprenticeship training providers. This means it meets the strict diligence, capability, quality and financial health criteria set out by the Skills and Funding Agency and is recognised as providing high-quality apprenticeship training.
Professor Peter Francis, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Northumbria University, said: “We are very pleased to be on the register – it is an indication of the quality of the provision being offered at Northumbria and a reflection of the strong links we have built up with local and national businesses to develop our degree apprenticeship programmes.
“We recognise that there may be many organisations that are unsure how degree apprenticeships might fit into their business model and we would urge them to come along to one of our events, speak to our experts and find out more.”
To find out more about the degree apprenticeship events taking place at Northumbria and to book a place, please visit www.northumbria.ac.uk/degreeapprenticeships
Northumbria is a research-rich, business-focused, professional university with a global reputation for academic excellence. To find out more about our courses go to www.northumbria.ac.uk