Blog » Apprentices aged 25 plus help fill skills shortage

Apprentices aged 25 plus help fill skills shortage

23rd September 2019

A number of companies are seeking apprentices aged 25 plus to help meet a skills shortage.

That was the message from Derry City and Strabane District Council as it encouraged candidates to avail of opportunities in the area.

Skills shortages in a number of industries across Northern Ireland mean the usual apprentice age range of 16 to 24 years has been extended to 25 and over to ensure there are enough skilled workers to meet the demand in key areas.

The Rutledge Group is one of many private training organisations working in partnership with Derry City and Strabane District Council on its apprenticeship programme. With 15 offices across Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland it offers vocational and corporate training and government training initiatives, such as Training for Success, ApprenticeshipsNl and Steps2Success, as well as permanent and temporary recruitment, healthcare recruitment and domiciliary care services.

Through it Karl Bradley (28) was given the chance to take up a level 3 apprenticeship in IT and Telecoms Professional at his workplace, Budget Energy. He is encouraging others to think about doing the same.

Karl said: “I wanted to update my skills in web design and coding so the apprenticeship has been a great way to learn more. Dermot from Rutledge Group comes in most Fridays and takes us through the course, explaining it and setting practical tasks which we work on ourselves. I really enjoy it, it’s very interesting. I don’t think I would have had the opportunity otherwise.”

Highlighting the importance of apprenticeship opportunities for young people in the area, Tina Gillespie, Skills Manager with Derry City and Strabane District Council said: “The promotion of apprenticeships is a key element of the education and skills outcomes set out in the Council’s Strategic Growth Plan and overseen by the Education and Skills Partnership.

“Apprenticeships encourage young people to look at vocational options for training in their chosen profession through on-the-job training, study, an industry-recognised qualification and earning a wage.”

As part of the Education and Skills Delivery Partnership (ESDP) Derry City and Strabane District Council, along with partners, is supporting employers to secure and develop the skills they need to increase productivity and enable individuals to find fulfilling employment.

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