As part of National Apprenticeship Week, Harrow College, Capgemini and The Careers & Enterprise Company hosted a special event to give young people information and guidance into a future career through apprenticeships.

The free public event called ‘Ask the Apprentice’ took place at Harrow College on Wednesday and was designed to provide further insight into apprenticeships and explain how an apprenticeship can lead to a very successful career.

Apprenticeship event

A number of employers including Travis Perkins, Rolls-Royce, British Gas, Lloyds Banking Group, Nationwide Building Society, DWP, Barclays Bank and the NHS were in attendance at the event. As well as offering information about the apprentice schemes they offer, a number of their past and present apprentices also took part in a question and answer session to share their experiences and dispel any apprenticeship scheme myths or stereotypes.

Apprentices

The packed audience made up of young people, parents/guardians, employers and careers advisors listened as the panellists spoke about what attracted them to an apprentice scheme, why it’s a great alternative to university especially for those keen to earn whilst they learn, the structure of apprenticeship programmes and how well organised they are to suit your career path and the many career opportunities that have, and continue, to open.

Christine Hodgson, Chair of The Careers & Enterprise Company and Capgemini, commented:

“Capgemini convened this event to show the importance of apprenticeships as a route into a successful and fulfilling career for young people. We heard apprentices from a range of industries including finance, engineering, technology and the civil service all describing a real alternative to university which offers school leavers a fantastic opportunity to build both the academic and practical skills necessary for a successful career in today’s increasingly digital economy.

“Apprenticeships also offer some clear benefits to employers as they can improve the talent pipeline; at Capgemini, they are now a key sources of young talent for us with over 350 apprentices working across the UK. But, if we are to recruit the diverse talent pool all businesses need, we must do more to ensure that young people, and their parents, understand the true value of apprenticeships. Young people need to be fully informed of their options before they leave education, and business has a vital role to play in this. Harrow College is a great example, using the recently opened enterprise centre to bring young people and businesses together regularly and providing a hub for local businesses.”

Christine Hodgson and apprentices