Business secretary Vince Cable encourages UCAS to include higher apprenticeships

In his Cambridge Public Policy Lecture yesterday, business secretary Vince Cable encouraged UCAS to include high-level apprenticeships into its admissions services in a bid to see apprenticeships as a viable alternative to university.

He said: “This is an essential step to making higher apprenticeships the norm rather than a niche in the overall skills programme.” 

“Higher apprenticeships are an important solution to the sub-degree gap, and there are already some superb schemes, for which entry is as competitive as getting into [the University of Cambridge].”

“If we are to have credible, high-level vocational programmes – which are a legitimate and equally prestigious alternative to the traditional undergraduate route – older school leavers should be able to consider them alongside the university option.”

Helen Thorne, director of policy and research at UCAS, said its website “encourages students to think about a wide range of future options, including alternatives to higher education such as apprenticeships.”

 “We look forward to working with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to ensure that students have access to the best possible information as they make decisions about their future education and career pathways.”