An ambitious plan from further education and training agency SOLAS aims to change negative views of apprenticeships by making them first choice - career plan ‘A’ - for people from all backgrounds and abilities.
Following the Government’s action plan for education, in the past two years the apprenticeship model of learning has been expanding into new areas. Apart from the traditional construction, motor industry and electrics, since last September news areas have been introduced, including insurance practitioner and industrial electrical engineering. Approximately twenty new apprenticeship areas will be introduced over the next few years; with financial services, accounting technician, original equipment manufacturer and commis chef to be among them. A dedicated website has been created for information and guidance on apprenticeship programmes.
It is expected that the new apprenticeship fields will increase female participation. The National Women’s Council of Ireland and SOLAS have been working together to identify the reasons for, and obstacles to, low female participation in apprenticeships.