As this 14th annual week-long celebration of apprenticeships across England comes to a close we’re taking a moment to look back, and celebrate everything we love about apprenticeships!
It’s been quite a week, reaching thousands of potential apprentices, parents, teachers and careers leaders across the UK with a calendar of great social posts, blogs, webinars, media, events and live chats.
So, what do we love most about apprenticeships?
Dispelling myths about apprenticeships…
We had lots of chances to do that this week! Apprenticeships attract a lot of myths some harking back to the 1980’s (remember those days?) and others just because apprenticeships don’t get that same press coverage that university graduates do.
On Thursday we gave an insight session to over 60 school/college students about apprenticeships at Virgin Media – two big assumptions we were repeatedly asked to clarify were 1) minimum education requirements for an apprenticeship being A levels – at Virgin Media our schemes vary from no minimum educational requirements (although English and Maths GCSE’s are preferred) to undergraduate degrees, depending on the scheme and 2) that you had to re-apply for ‘your job’ on completion of your apprentice training – not true with Virgin Media, ALL our apprenticeship schemes are offered on a permanent basis so no need to re-apply on completion!
We also did a little myth busting on Instagram this week and it was really pleasing to see that 84% of respondents recognized that apprenticeships were not aimed only at low-skilled roles.
We love…dispelling apprenticeship myths.
Well, these days virtually! We were thrilled to join UCAS and the National Apprenticeship Service on Tuesday for their Discover Apprenticeships Exhibition event and saw a massive 489 visitors to the Virgin Media booth and had chats with over 100 excited students interested to find out more about our apprenticeship schemes – thank you to everyone who took the time to stop by and chat with our team.
We love…getting to know you all.
Letting our Apprentices tell their own stories…
We had lots of opportunities to do that this week and hope you got to see some of them. We kicked off with stories from Jade, Charlotte, Antiana and Jonathan about their experiences starting a new apprenticeship during the pandemic
And the amazing Maddy, one of our Project Management apprentices, contributed to and co-ordinated a daily takeover on Instagram letting apprentices tell their stories. We heard about their day-to-day lives, how they’re coping with working from home and keeping it social with their teams and our other apprentices.
Ellie showed us some time lapse footage of laying fibre in her role as a network engineer out in the field, Jack one of our field technicians showing us a few snaps from life on the road – including an in-car zoom meeting and how tidy he tries to keep the back of his van! Some of our Planners, Business Administrators and Project Managers showed us how they’re managing to keep it social, some of their furry working from home companions, study sessions for their apprenticeship and the breaks and techniques they’re employing to take care of their own wellbeing.
We love…giving our employees the platforms to be themselves and share their experiences.
Not forgetting the parents…
As well as supporting individuals as they pursue a new apprenticeship, we fully recognize those individuals may well be looking to their peers, parents and school leaders for advice. So, how can we ensure you’re best prepared for this? This week we shared some great content for parents – a blog from Emma about how her teenage twins took different routes after school (an apprenticeship and a university degree), we’ve updated our ‘what parents need to know’ guide on our website and you can even register your interest in our apprenticeship schemes now on behalf of your child.
We love…keeping parents in the know 😉
Celebrating Apprenticeship successes…
We don’t always talk about it all the time but our schemes are award-winning and we’ve seen some really great results over the years
- We’ve enrolled over 1,700 apprentices since 2008 and 98% of our apprentices are proud to work for Virgin Media.
- And a phenomenal 100% of our apprentices qualified against targets in 2020, 54% of those achieving a distinction <we love this!>
Also this week, Eve, Mohammed and James all joined Roxy for a little (virtual) fireside chat showcasing how apprenticeships have helped them kick-start their career. They talked through their (multiple) apprenticeships over the years and how these have helped them develop into the roles they do today in Network Engineering, Learning and Development and Cyber Security.
We love…celebrating every apprentice success.
Offering new apprenticeships…
And of course, we couldn’t round up the week without mentioning how much we love being able to offer new apprenticeship schemes! The impact of the COVID19 pandemic has certainly left its mark on the UK economy and we feel very fortunate to be able to continue to offer new apprenticeships. We’re recruiting now for a number of apprenticeships up and down the country, and with more to come over the next few months – don’t forget you can check out what apprenticeships are recruiting now, and what might be coming up in the near future on our careers website.
We love…hiring new apprentices!
Thank you for joining us this National Apprenticeship Week, we’ve been celebrating the diversity of opportunity and value that apprenticeships bring, and how they can help individuals and employers #BuildTheFuture. We hope you now know why we believe apprenticeships help to fill skills gaps, upskill and revitalise our workforce ensuring we’re future proof, future ready and building us a diverse workforce – ensuring no one is left behind.
Virgin Media – We love Apprenticeships!