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Celebrating the history and the future of apprenticeships

Published: March 18, 2016

The Cornwall College Group Camborne apprenticeships

Business leaders and specially invited guests have gathered at Heartlands, near Pool, to celebrate the history of apprenticeships in Cornwall.  The documentary entitled, Apprenticeship Legends, has been produced by The Cornwall College Group to celebrate National Apprenticeship Week and looked back at almost five hundred years of work based learning in the county.

Principal and CEO of The Cornwall College Group, Amarjit Basi, said: “We have a long history of partnerships with industry to champion apprenticeships as a way of developing a skilled workforce.  The apprentices that have taken part in this film are all inspirational, they are role models to our current and future cohorts; an apprenticeship can really take you anywhere in the world and these people are proof of that.”

‘Apprenticeship Legends’ features former apprentices from across the decades and the aim is to inspire the next generation into work based learning.  Business that have supported the film include Blue Flame, The Eden Project, Pirate FM, Inkfish Hair Salon, Dartmoor National Park Authority, Fugro Seacore, Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, Pendennis Shipyard, Nansmerrow Farm, The Capital Hotel, The Grain Sign Factory and KPK Builders.

Paul Smith is the managing director of Blue Flame: “We were delighted to take part in this documentary because we are incredibly proud of our apprentices and the work they do.  We are always looking out for people with particular skills that will help move our business forward and for us to get the right kind of engineer; an apprenticeship is an ideal solution.”

There was also a short presentation about the future of apprenticeships from the Association of Colleges, which looked at the implementation of Trailblazers.  The Apprenticeship Torch was also at the screening; the torch symbolises the passing of knowledge from one generation to the next.

Francis Clark, The Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust and Blue Flame also pledged to carry the torch.

Paul Smith from Blue Flame added: “We are delighted to carry the apprenticeship torch; we are committed to growing our business through apprenticeships and have recently launched the Blue Flame Academy in partnership with Cornwall College.  The Academy offers the current students a chance to gain work experience with our engineers and eventually they could end up as an apprentice with us.”

The Centre for Economics and Business Research, reported in 2015 that households would be willing to spend as much as £18 billion per year more if all businesses took on apprentices,with consumers willing to pay a price premium from knowing that companies are investing in local jobs and skills through apprenticeships.

Sally Foard, Director of Development and Adult Learning at The Cornwall College Group said: “The film is inspirational and I am delighted that some of our industry partners have pledged, with the torch, to continue working towards apprenticeships.

“Hiring an apprentice can help a business to grow their own talent by developing a motivated, skilled and qualified workplace. An apprenticeship is a way for young people and adult learners to earn while they learn in a real job, gaining a real qualification and a real future.”

You can see a copy of the final film online at https://www.cornwall.ac.uk/apprenticeship-legends-2016

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