HEFCE to manage Degree Apprenticeship Development Fund

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has asked the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) to manage the Degree Apprenticeship Development Fund.

The fund will provide £8m starting in academic year 2016-17 to help universities and colleges work with employers to develop new degree apprenticeships ready for delivery from academic year 2017-18.

The Skills Funding Agency will receive a further £2m to encourage more learners to take up degree apprenticeships.

The fund was announced last month by the Business Secretary, Sajid Javid and forms one element of the Government’s strategy for expanding apprenticeships to improve vocational opportunities for young people and address skills gaps to increase productivity and improve economic performance.

HEFCE’s director (policy) Chris Millward said: “Degree apprenticeships are an exciting development for students, employers, universities and colleges. They provide a new route for students to progress through higher education whilst in work, and for employers to secure the higher level skills they need.  In doing so, they secure positive educational and employment outcomes with benefits well beyond the students and employers involved.

“The development fund is aimed at expanding apprenticeship provision in order to provide high-quality choices for students and employers who will be looking to spend their apprenticeship levy on higher-level skills from 2017-18.

“We hope that it will encourage all higher education institutions to consider how they might work with employers to develop alternatives to traditional routes through higher education, which meet industry needs.”