Employers offer students advice about apprenticeships

Local employers were on hand to give students advice and tips about what makes an ideal apprentice at an event to celebrate Apprenticeship Week 2017.

Over 400 students from New College Durham who are studying a full-time vocational course in areas including plumbing, professional cookery, health and social care, mechanical engineering and performing arts, took part in the event, which was held at the college this week.

The students were able to find out the qualities an employer looks for in an apprentice, why they employ apprentices and the day-to-day tasks that an apprentice does in different companies.  The college’s Apprenticeship Team were also there to offer advice and answer any questions.

17-year-old Reece Brien from Carrville, who is studying a full-time Level 2 Plumbing course at New College Durham, said:

“I really enjoyed the event today.  All the employer talks were good and they told us about what an apprenticeship involves and what they look for when hiring an apprentice.” 

After he’s completed his Level 2 qualification, Reece would like to progress to an apprenticeship with a building company and eventually establish his own business.

Nine local employers including Keepmoat, Beamish Museum, ESH Group, Nissan, County Durham and Darlington Fire Service and Tolent attended the event.  Sharon Bennett, Director of Apprenticeship at New College Durham, said: “We were delighted to welcome so many employers and students to our apprenticeship event and promote the benefits of studying for an apprenticeship.”

Staff from New College Durham also visited several schools across the region with an apprenticeship roadshow to inspire the next generation of apprentices with exciting and interactive activities.

Apprenticeships offer the opportunity to get hands-on experience in the workplace while studying for nationally recognised qualifications and earn a wage.  New College Durham offers over a wide variety of apprenticeships in over 20 different industry sectors, and the college’s apprenticeship achievement rates are 21% above the national average. 

Apprenticeship Week, which is co-ordinated by the National Apprenticeship Service, is designed to celebrate apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals, businesses and the economy.

Related information

Apprenticeship - Business


Apprenticeships are linked to a particular job role and are a great first step towards a career. They comprise work-based training from an employer, in partnership with the college.