Applications soar for PwC’s higher apprenticeships

Paving the way for apprenticeships in the UK

Paving the way for apprenticeships in the UK

Leading professional services firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has seen a rise of 318% in applications to their Higher Apprenticeship and School Leaver programme since the financial crisis. Last year the firm saw a doubling in applications to school leaver programmes after 30 new apprenticeship positions were created across teams based in London. In fact, 40% of all applications received were for London roles.

PwC has been bringing London school leavers onto the workforce for over ten years. This support was put into practice last year when the firm introduced the first nationally recognised Higher Apprenticeship for the professional services. Apprentices earn on the job alongside studying for a qualification in audit, consultation or tax. In 2013, the firm will be taking on 50 Tax and Consulting Higher Apprentices.

A new study by the Education & Employers Taskforce demonstrated how 88% of school-goers who were contacted by potential employers about future possibilities said it helped them to plan their career path. Despite this only 11% got the chance to speak to professionals during their time at school.

Head of people at PwC, Gaenor Bagley, said: “We have to demystify the world of work, business and young people’s options for study if we are to realistically attract a wider range of people to the professions and the City.”

“With the routes into work and training changing so radically over the past five years, Higher Apprenticeships are a simple idea, with far –reaching consequences for development of business skills, to support UK growth. Employers have to do more to tackle young people’s misconceptions about Apprenticeships being limited, or risky or second best.”