Edinburgh recently hosted a roundtable of industry players who are committed to improving the status and profile of data-based apprenticeships. Chaired by Joshua Ryan-Saha of the Data Lab, the event brought together first time employers, training providers and universities, all of whom are focused on developing apprenticeship standards.
It was facilitated by Tony Venus of the Tech Partnership and Marloes Rozing of Skills Development Scotland, the meeting attracted a broad range of participants including Sopra Steria, the Digital Health and Care Institute Scotland and Leidos. Among the breakout sessions, one focused on the newly developed Data Analyst Technical Apprenticeship (at SCQF level 8), outlining the programme’s structure and learning outcomes and emphasising the many benefits a data apprentice could bring to businesses. The second session examined the forthcoming Graduate Level Apprenticeships, set to launch in Scotland in the 2017 academic session.
“A positive response”
Data Lab’s Josh Ryan-Saha was delighted by the positive tone of the meeting. “Employers recognise the potential of apprenticeship to improve digital skills in their business in a fast and cost effective manner,” he said. “Particularly in the light of the forthcoming apprenticeship levy, there is real interest in developing apprenticeship programmes that reflect Scotland’s specific needs.Every employer went away with the information to promote apprenticeships within their business, and several have signed up to contribute to the Technical Expert Group that will continue to advise on programme development.”
Tony Venus of the Tech Partnership agrees: “For many employers, degree apprenticeships in particular are a new concept, but there was real enthusiasm for them. With programmes available for delivery from autumn 2017, including the CGI, Software Development and IT Management options to be delivered by Glasgow Caledonian University, Scottish employers will have a new and exciting way to recruit and train high quality tech staff.”