T Levels to turn on the skills tap

Taken: Image Byline: Dave Charnley Photography.

Breaking into the world of work can be daunting for both career starters and their employers – and that’s why experience is vital.

T Levels are just one of the ways employers can benefit from taking on work experience students.

The new qualifications, due to launch in 2020, have been developed with employers to equip learners with the skills they need to enter the world of work.

The courses, which will be equivalent to three A Levels, include work placements of at least 45 days – allowing students to get essential hands-on experience in their chosen industry.

Placements will feature sector-specific learning programmes so students can hit the ground running once they start full-time roles.

With courses in industries as wideranging as digital, health and social care and construction, Middlesbrough College’s dedicated extended work experience team are keen to speak to employers who can benefit from the new qualifications.

This year alone the team has filled 1,400 work placements across a variety of national and local employers – including the likes of Marks & Spencer, Beyond Housing and James Cook Hospital – with more in the pipeline.

National construction business Willmott Dixon is just one employer benefitting from offering work experience placements.

The family-run company partners with the college’s specialist apprenticeship and training arm, Northern Skills Group, to deliver placements to learners interested in a career in the construction industry.

Clair Dolan, community engagement coordinator at Willmott Dixon, said: “This is such an exciting and rewarding industry to work in. That’s why we like to give young people a taste of the many varied opportunities in our industry.

Taken: Image Byline: Dave Charnley Photography.

“We want to inspire a new generation to join the industry. By offering placements young people have had the opportunity to visit us or work alongside us on site and get a flavour of what it is we do day to day.

“At the same time, our experienced team members are able to act as mentors and provide insight gained throughout their own careers in the industry.”

Willmott Dixon, named fourth in this year’s Sunday Times Best 100 Companies To Work For list, has also recently been awarded the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in the category of “promoting opportunity” in recognition of its community and social value work.

Northern Skills Group’s own work experience team matches students with employers to make sure work placements are of maximum benefit to both.

Steph Coleman, executive director of business and partnerships at Northern Skills Group, said: “With the focus on handson experience, T Levels are an important opportunity for employers to shape the way young people are trained to meet their future needs.

“And for students they’re a route to accessing quality careers in a range of sectors – many where skills gaps have emerged, meaning the earning potential is improved.

“Students studying T Levels will also be able to progress to higher and degree-level apprenticeships or technical degrees.”

To find out how your organisation can take on work experience students, call 03453 404040.

 

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