IT Apprentice Scheme Praised by HRH the Duke of York as Northgate Announces Next Phase of Recruitment
Published by Maria McMullan for Northgate Managed Services in Education and also in Central Government, Communities, Local Government
Young people and parents urged to consider the value of Apprenticeship Schemes
HRH the Duke of York has praised Northgate Managed Services for the success of its Apprenticeship Scheme following a visit to the company’s Newtownabbey-based headquarters.
Northgate, which is recruiting a further four apprentices as part of the roll out of the scheme, also urged young people and their parents to set aside any preconceptions they may have regarding the value of such schemes.
Northgate was the first Northern Ireland IT company to launch a bespoke ICT apprenticeship scheme, with the aim of offering young people a direct career development opportunity in one of the economy’s growth sectors. Supported by the Department of Employment and Learning, the scheme provides school leavers or those seeking a change of career with a viable and highly effective route to employment. The scheme has resulted in over 60 current or former ICT apprentices joining the company’s UK-wide workforce.
Structured on an ‘earn as you learn’ basis Northgate’s scheme combines on the job training with college-based study. Upon completion, the apprentices gain NVQ IT Practitioner qualifications and are equipped with the skills and experience which make them highly employable within Northgate and the wider IT sector.
During his visit, Prince Andrew met current apprentice Ben Uprichard, who struggled to find employment in a sporting role and instead opted for the IT route with Northgate. He also met Peter Kane, a former brick-layer who after completing the apprenticeship scheme is now in a permanent technical specialist role with Northgate.
Andy Ross, Chief Executive of Northgate Managed Services, is committed to enhancing the educational outcomes and employability of young people. He regards the Apprenticeship Scheme as part of the company’s wider talent development pool and as such the apprentices are fully embedded within the business:
“Northgate plays a lead role in the delivery of ICT services to the education sector but we also strive to encourage young people, to consider IT as a career option. Graduates schemes are important but we don’t regard a university degree as the only route. For many young people apprenticeships offer an alternative in-road to what can be a highly rewarding career. We would also urge parents to set aside any preconceptions and consider the benefits offered through vocational training and apprenticeships schemes in particular.”