WBTC launches Enhanced Traineeships to help tackle rise in youth unemployment

West Berkshire Training Consortium (WBTC) is to launch a new style of training programme. The Enhanced Traineeship has been developed to both tackle the anticipated rise in youth unemployment while also benefitting employers in the area as they resume their business operations.

The new style programme, which is available now, has been designed to bridge the gap between the end of school or college and the time employers feel confident to take on an apprentice.

With youth unemployment potentially set to rise by 640,000 this year (BBC News), it is important, now more than ever, for training providers to develop new and innovative ways of working. Finding a solution that is suitable for both employers and school leavers is challenging. The advantage of the Enhanced Traineeship is it supports both groups at the point where each need it most. For Berkshire’s young adults this is immediately following the end of school or college and for the region’s employers it is when they and their business is ready for both the responsibility and benefit of an apprentice. 

WBTC Managing Director, Matt Garvey, said “We find ourselves at, what feels like, an impossible juncture. Young people across our region are potentially being left to online university courses, socially distanced full time education or face unemployment. At the same time, employers and organisations are trying to kick-start their businesses and get everything back on track. We developed the Enhanced Traineeship to solve an issue that so many young people are facing.”

Learners will apply for an apprenticeship vacancy as they normally would. However,  they won’t start the full time apprenticeship with their new employer until later in the year. In the meantime, the learner will start an Enhanced Traineeship. They will spend at least one day a week onsite with their apprenticeship employer, and one a week at WBTC’s training centre in Newbury where they’ll be studying employability and business-based skills. This will help the employer to build the capacity to take on their new apprentices full time.

Rachel Eaves, Business Development Coordinator at WBTC, added “From speaking to employers I’ve found that many just don’t feel ready to commit to taking on an apprentice at the moment. The Enhanced Traineeship will give organisations additional support at no extra cost, and will make sure they don’t miss out on this recruitment window for the high-calibre apprentices leaving school at the moment.”

Learners and employers are encouraged to contact WBTC to discuss their options and see how the Enhanced Traineeship can help them now.

To find out more, visit https://www.wbtc-uk.com/the-complete-package-2/ and https://www.wbtc-uk.com/enhanced-traineeships-employers/.

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