University expands apprenticeship programme | University of Oxford
University apprentices joined skills minister Matthew Hancock MP and local MP Nicola Blackwood to launch the expanded apprenticeship programme.
University apprentices joined skills minister Matthew Hancock MP and local MP Nicola Blackwood to launch the expanded apprenticeship programme.

Credit: Stuart Beeb

University expands apprenticeship programme

Oxford University is expanding its apprenticeship programme for young people in Oxfordshire.

The University will commit to employing and training 150 new apprentices across the university's departments and colleges over the next two years as part of the new programme, which will increase the number of apprentices across the university by more than fivefold.

The expansion will be supported in part by a grant from the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership. Aimed at young people between the ages of 16 and 23, University Apprenticeships will be available in a wide range of roles from lab-based posts to museum maintenance and IT support positions. The University has set itself the target of employing 150 additional apprenticeships and achieving 50 trainee placements in work roles by March 2017.

Clive Shepherd, Apprenticeship Manager at Oxford University, says: 'For many years the University has offered apprenticeships to develop the highly specialist engineering and technical skills required by a world leading research institution. We are looking forward to significantly expanding the programme, as it is a highly effective way to train new and existing staff in the most relevant skills for a wide range of University roles.

'This is an exciting time for Apprenticeships at Oxford, and will help embed apprentices as a key part our future workforce planning. Not only does the University need to attract a pipeline of talented staff to continue our work we also recognise our moral and social duty to provide opportunities for local people.'

The new drive to identify apprenticeship opportunities across the University is part of a local government scheme to increase takeup and support of apprenticeships across the county. The Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership is supporting employers including the University with grants to help employers embed apprenticeships in their staff training and recruitment plans. The programme was launched by Minister for Skills Matthew Hancock MP on 9 March at Exeter College.

Oxford University is one of the largest employers in Oxfordshire with nearly 12,000 staff spread over 78 departments. The new scheme will include a dedicated apprenticeships manager and apprentices will join teams supporting the research and teaching work of the University, with many apprenticeships in highly specialised Science, Technology Engineering and Medicine departments.