Apprenticeships boost opportunities in Salford

Categories: School of Science, Engineering and Environment

An apprentice has had a ‘life changing’ experience thanks to a unique partnership between Capita, the University of Salford and Salford City College Group.

They have joined together to develop a new apprenticeship scheme in the construction industry, aimed at developing skills and offering unique opportunities for young people in the city.

The scheme sees apprentices work at transformation and digital services business, Capita, whilst receiving a university education - studying one day a week for a degree which is funded through the apprentice levy. Upon completion of the program, they achieve the Chartered Surveyor – Building Surveyor Level 6 Apprenticeship. This incorporates the BSc (Hons) Building Surveying degree, as well as the opportunity to become a Chartered Member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

18-year-old Bradley Smith, from Worsley is among the first to benefit from the partnership.

Bradley said: “Through my journey in education, I feel an apprenticeship is better suited to me as an individual.

“A more hands-on experience would help me to gain a better understanding of the career that I hope to one day fulfil.

“Learning those in-work behaviours and standards in a practical environment is valuable and more appealing [than] theoretical knowledge. It has been a life changing course for me for sure.”

The Chartered Surveyor apprenticeship scheme was spearheaded from within Capita by University of Salford alumnus, Phil Bishop.

Phil, Technical Director for Capita Local Public Service, said: “As part of our dedication to creating better outcomes, we engaged with Salford City College Group and the University of Salford to explore how we could support students. Following discussions, we began development of a new apprenticeship scheme.

“From September 2023, we’ll start taking on Apprentice Building Surveyors through the scheme. They’ll join over 600 apprentices currently enrolled on other Capita programmes.

“Many of these students are the first in their family to attend university and so this opportunity to earn, gain on the job knowledge and a university education without incurring student debt, is invaluable.

“Our colleagues have welcomed all new apprentices and ensured that every student feels part of the Capita team. Apprentices have access to all of our internal support networks and are encouraged to join their team in our local offices when practical.”

Arron Ward, Development Manager at the University of Salford, said: “One of our key ambitions as a university is to work closely with industry to make sure we produce graduates with the key skills needed by companies, and to offer opportunities to students to make the most of their talents.

“This scheme with Capita is exactly the kind of project that will help produce work ready graduates, like Bradley, who can make a real contribution to their employer from their first day and go on to have successful careers.”

Allan Milne, Director of Apprenticeships and Employer Engagement at Salford City College Group said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Capita and The University of Salford to create brilliant career opportunities for our students, and we’ve no doubt that Bradley will be very successful in the role!”

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