National Apprenticeship Week: Future-Proofing our Workforce

Cardiff Capital Region’s Venture Graduates is celebrating National Apprenticeship Week 2024 to recognise the positive impact of apprenticeships on local businesses, the wider community, and regional economies. 

This year’s theme ‘Skills for Life’ showcases how apprenticeships equip individuals with valuable skills and tools to progress throughout their careers, in innovative areas such as technology, data, and green sectors.  Apprenticeships play a crucial role to address skills shortages and help future-proof our workforce for generations to come. 

Venture Graduates is partnered with excellent apprenticeship programmes that are working to tackle unemployment and drive business growth within our Region. 

Building Futures with Y Prentis

The Y Prentis shared apprenticeship model offers the unique opportunity to gain valuable work experience and apprenticeships within the construction industry. 

Funded by both the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and Welsh Government, Y Prentis work with industry-leading construction companies to provide apprentices with the ability to gain hands-on, project-based work experience. The programme empowers apprentices with the confidence and skills to begin a successful career within the industry, with full support from the Y Prentis team. 

Darryl Williams, Programme Manager for Y Prentis, explains: 

“Y Prentis apprentice numbers continue to grow while traditional apprenticeship numbers have decreased. The shared approach to the apprenticeship programme widens access to much-needed apprentice skills for employers who cannot commit to the full three-year programme.  

“Our unique programme ensures apprentices gain the practical experience they need to succeed, whilst developing a talent pipeline to local businesses in need of new skills”. 

Aspire for STEM Skills

In a strategic partnership between the Ebbw Vale Enterprise Zone, Merthyr Council and Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council, the Aspire Shared Apprenticeship Programme offers engineering and advanced manufacturing employers the opportunity to benefit from a talented apprentice to support their business growth and address skills needs within these sectors. 

While supporting employers with talent development, the Programme tackles unemployment and widens access to aspirational opportunities for young people in Wales. Apprentices will be jointly employed by Aspire and partner companies, alongside receiving dedicated support from an Aspire mentoring officer throughout their apprenticeship journey. 

Leo Williams, Mechanical Engineering Apprentice, shares his experience of an apprenticeship with Aspire and Enviro Wales: 

“I have only been in my role for three months, but I’ve already started to learn new skills and different techniques that will be very useful in future employment opportunities.  

“As I’m employed by Aspire and Enviro Wales, I have access to lots of support. I can speak with my mentor 24/7 if I have any problems. Before contacting Aspire, I had applied to so many apprenticeships with zero success – having a mentor and Aspire by my side makes it so much easier.”

Rise and Shine: Blaenau Gwent & Merthyr Tydfil

After successful breakfast events in Cardiff, Torfaen, and Monmouthshire, Rise and Shine is coming to Blaenau Gwent on Thursday 29th February. It’s a fantastic opportunity to gain insight into the skills opportunities available within the region. 

Participants can enjoy a complimentary breakfast whilst learning about the skills offerings from Venture Graduates, the Aspire Programme, and Cyber Innovation Hub which support graduates, businesses, and apprentices. 

Local employers in Blaenau Gwent and Merthyr Tydfil are invited to avail of the comprehensive skills support available to them through these events.  

Esme Grainger Profile Photo
WRITTEN BY ESME GRAINGER, GRADUATE ASSOCIATE AT CARDIFF CAPITAL REGION.

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