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East Midlands Chamber News

Employers and training focus of new publication

Central College at House of LordsStaff from Central College Nottingham attended the House of Commons on Monday 15 June for the Association of Colleges’ (AoC) annual summer reception, as the College is featuring in the AoC’s new publication: Colleges and Employers – Working together to create a highly-skilled workforce.

Central College runs a unique apprenticeship programme with Boots UK. This is included as a case study in the publication, which is aimed at highlighting the work colleges do with businesses on a national scale.

Central is one of only 13 colleges nationally to be highlighted and the publication is being used to highlight the importance of further education to the Government.

Boots UK works closely with Central as part of its StepIn2Boots apprenticeship programme, which supports young people aged 16–18 into a career in Science, IT or Engineering. There are currently four Central College engineering apprentices on the scheme, who joined the business in September 2014.

Apprentices on the Level 3 course are awarded a BTEC Extended Diploma in Applied Science, spending one day a week at college alongside learning and working onsite at Boots UK in Nottingham.

The other apprentices are studying full-time in their first year of a Higher Apprenticeship, meaning they will gain a university-level qualification on completion. Boots UK are working closely with the Central College Business Engagement team to ensure the young people will be fully prepared to start working at Boots UK in Nottingham this summer, for the second year of their Higher National Certificate (HNC) in Electronic Engineering.

When the Boots UK Engineering apprentices joined the scheme in September, Central College was just opening its new Engineering facility at its Highfields Centre, in Nottingham Science Park.

Brendan Coulson, Head of Employer Engagement and Choices at Central said: “As the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer, Boots UK has the advanced technology to really benefit our apprentices. Also, its commitment to training and development will ensure that these young people have a bright future ahead of them.”

Victoria Fox, Assistant Learning and Development Manager at Boots UK said: “We are continually impressed by the insight, passion, and enthusiasm that young people bring to the business and the positive impact they have on our customers. Boots UK is very proud of all its apprentices including those who attend Central College and the way in which the team at Central have worked to maintain the high standards we expect from a training provider.

“The facilities at Central’s Highfields centre provide the apprentices with the best learning environment and will really help set them up for when they transfer their skills into the workplace.”