#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 14°C Friday 18 September 2020
Advertisement

Simon Harris: 'We need to drop the snobby attitude that the only way to progress in life is to go to university'

With the Leaving Certificate results out on Monday, the minister said an apprenticeship is a great way to get the career you want.

There is a €3,000 financial incentive for employers to take on apprentices between March and the end of the year.
There is a €3,000 financial incentive for employers to take on apprentices between March and the end of the year.
Image: Julien Behal Photography

APPRENTICESHIPS SHOULD BE seen as a “real way” of reaching your career goals, according to Minister for Further and Higher Education Simon Harris.

With the Leaving Certificate results out on Monday, the minister encouraged parents to broaden their conversation with their teenage children about what options are open to them. 

“We want apprenticeships to be seen as a real way of getting a career you may wish for,” said Harris. 

The minister was speaking during a visit to the Pfizer Grange Castle campus with the Tánaiste Leo Varadkar, where they were meeting with apprentices from Pfizer’s four apprenticeship programmes.

Varadkar encouraged employers and new trainees to consider undertaking an apprenticeship as an alternative to traditional third level education or direct entry into the workplace.

Harris said in the Dáil during the week:

“We need to drop the snobby attitude we have in this country that the only way one can progress in life is to go from the leaving certificate to the university. Whether it is an apprenticeship scheme, whether it is the post-leaving certificate, PLC, courses, or whether it is using the further education and training infrastructure, there are many ways to get to where one needs to get and I do not know why we insist on narrowing the conversation so early in this country.”

Varadkar said today that the government want more employers to see for themselves the benefits of taking on apprentices.

“The advantages include having a wider talent pool inside your company, a greater range of bespoke skills among employees, and the ability to deal with specific skill gaps.

“Around 6,500 employers are already running apprenticeship programmes but we want to see many more,” he said.

The July Stimulus Initiative established the Apprenticeship Incentivisation Scheme, which provides a grant of €3,000 per apprentice over two years, for employers who register apprentices before the end of the year.

“It offers greater choice to employers and to school leavers and learners of all ages,” said Varadkar.

“I’m very happy to report that in the three weeks since the Scheme went live, applications have been received from employers representing 310 individual apprentices,” he said.

#Open journalism No news is bad news Support The Journal

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support us now

“Apprenticeship offers real choice both to business and learners of all ages and stages of experience. The sector has changed radically over the past 4 years, with 58 different programmes now available across all sectors of the economy.

“Last month three new programmes were launched – the Supply Chain Associate apprenticeship (QQI level 7), the first Recruitment Executive apprenticeship which is a 3 year QQI level 8 award and the Principal Engineer apprenticeship which is the first apprenticeship in Ireland to lead to a QQI level 10 award,” said the minister.

Information for employers and potential apprentices on apprenticeship programmes or available opportunities in apprenticeship may be found on www.apprenticeship.ie or through your local Education and Training Board (ETB).

Read next:

COMMENTS (88)

This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel