Local employers and their apprentices were joined by North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson for the Annual Apprenticeship Awards at Swindon College.
Local employers including the Research Councils, the NHS, local schools, Swindon Borough Council, engineering companies, accountants and construction companies gathered to honour the apprentices who had been selected to receive a special recognition award for their hard work and effort.
The qualifications covered a broad range including business administration, accounting, carpentry, electrical, housing, health practitioner and supporting teaching and learning.
The apprentices were joined by their family and friends, and speeches were made throughout the evening to recognise the journey that each apprentice had been on.
Since 2010, there have been 4.1 million new apprenticeships created across the country with 12,600 apprenticeships created in Swindon.
Apprenticeships provide people of all ages with the chance to learn whilst they earn, with the Government’s newly reformed apprenticeship scheme now requiring at least 20% of time spent in off the job training, often at a college, university or with a training provider.
The number of people starting on the new employer-designed standards in the first half of 2018-19 has increased by 79%, which is an indication of the quality. Furthermore, small and medium-sized enterprises, and smaller businesses now get 95% of their training costs paid, making it easier for businesses of all size to provide the opportunity of an apprenticeship.
Justin said: “I enjoy attending this event every year as it is fantastic to hear each apprentices’ story and how the opportunity has transformed their life. Family and friends are always bursting with pride and each & every one of the employers can’t offer enough praise to their apprentice; demonstrating the invaluable contribution that they make to the business. Here in Swindon we have seen 12,600 new apprenticeships created since 2010 – that’s 12,600 new opportunities for people of all ages to learn a new trade whilst they earn. It is absolutely crucial we keep providing these opportunities and I will continue to support local providers including Swindon College to ensure this.”