Page added on March 7, 2013
Up to 30 young people will be offered apprenticeships this winter that could lead to a permanent job with Leicester City Council.
The council has created the opportunities in a range of disciplines – IT, business administration, customer service and premises management – as part of its commitment to tackling youth unemployment in Leicester.
The first 18 vacancies – in business administration and customer service – will be advertised on the council’s website and in Job Centres on Wednesday (30 January) and will be specifically aimed at young people aged 16 and over.
Vacancies in IT and premises management will be advertised in February.
Deputy City Mayor Cllr Rory Palmer said: “Over the next three years, our ‘Leicester to Work’ programme will create more than 100 apprenticeships, 160 internships for graduates and 400 six-month jobs to give young people real experience of work.
“Addressing youth unemployment is an immediate priority, as it’s clearly not acceptable to have more than 3,400 of our young people out of work and claiming Job Seekers’ Allowance.
“With this latest initiative, we want to offer up to 30 young people the opportunity to learn a trade in areas where there is the potential for a permanent job at the city council, while they improve their skills and qualifications.”
The successful apprentices – who are expected to join the council in March – will work a 30-hour week and earn the national minimum wage during their 12-month apprenticeship. They will also study for a Level 2 qualification in the discipline of their choice, which is the equivalent of five GCSEs at A*-C.
Around £500,000 has been earmarked for the apprenticeship scheme over the next three years.
Leicester City Council has a long tradition of offering apprenticeships, although this is the first time that opportunities in IT and premises management have been on offer.
Megan Holyoak, 18, started her apprenticeship in customer service last April.
“I chose to do an apprenticeship because of the opportunities it provides,” she said.
“It gives you one year’s work experience, as well as an approved qualification – and I’ll be finishing my apprenticeship with more knowledge and experience than I ever thought I could have, with the confidence to pursue a career in customer services.”
Louis Polydor, 20, is now ten months into his apprenticeship and is currently working with the council’s security staff.
“It’s been really good,” he said. “I spent the first six months concentrating on college work but I’m now getting wider experience in customer services. Doing an apprenticeship is definitely worth doing, if you want to improve your qualifications and your chances of getting a job.”
Apprentice Kieran Auld, 19, agrees. “It’s given me a great start and has got me on the working ladder,” he said.
”I had no qualifications when I started my apprenticeship but I’ve now got the maths and English I need to apply for a job in the army. I’ve really enjoyed it.”
The council apprenticeships are aimed at young people with Level 3 Qualifications (e.g A-Levels) or below, who are aged 16 and over, and who live in the city of Leicester – due to the government’s funding restrictions around apprenticeships.
The apprenticeships will be offered in:
• customer service (libraries and museums)
• premises management (caretaking)
• business and administration (finance, energy services, parking and IT services)
To find out more about apprenticeships at Leicester City Council, visit www.leicester.gov.uk/jobs from Wednesday (30 January). Deadline for the submission of applications for the customer service and business administration apprenticeships is Wednesday 13 February.
Leicester to Work is an initiative that forms part of Leicester’s Economic Action Plan – an eight-year strategy launched in November 2012 that aims to create the conditions needed for economic growth. More information is available at www.leicester.gov.uk/economicactionplan