Apprenticeships: "Lifeblood of the industry"

Published:  20 January, 2014

With National Apprenticeship Week approaching, Kevin Wellman of the Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering has drawn attention to the importance of apprenticeships, hailing them as "the lifeblood of the industry".

According to findings from the Office of National Statistics, over a quarter of university graduates are earning less than school leavers on apprenticeships. On top of this, research carried out in 2013 by BAE Systems and the Royal Academy of Engineering showed that almost a third (29%) of respondents said they now see the training schemes as a viable option for their children. They admitted that five years ago an apprenticeship was not something they would have ever considered.

“Apprenticeships are the lifeblood of the industry and should be given the respect they deserve,” said Mr Wellman, chief executive officer of CIPHE. “For too long they have been seen as a second-class route to a career. I believe that attitude is now changing.

“However, the plumbing and heating industry needs apprentices that are of the highest standard. Their goal should be to gain an NVQ Level 3 Diploma, to ensure they have the right skills set to tackle the challenges they will meet in the workplace.”

The CIPHE supports National Apprenticeship Week, which lasts from 3 March to 7 March.