Young engineers can take a vocational route all the way to a degree thanks to a new partnership between In-Comm Training and the University of Wolverhampton.
HNC Higher Apprenticeships have been launched in the West Midlands this month and have already attracted 20 people who are looking for a more practical route to gaining the highest possible competences and qualifications.
The HNC element of the programme is an intensive year-long course, which can be funded by the Apprenticeship Levy and features 12 technical modules with the learning being delivered at In-Comm’s state-of-the-art technical academy in Aldridge and the University’s dedicated engineering campus.
The competence element of the programme runs alongside, with the learner producing a portfolio of evidence complementing the knowledge undertaken in the HNC.
Participants on the course have the opportunity to focus their learning through elements, such as engineering and manufacture, design, research, business improvement techniques and new product development.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for young people and more mature workers to gain competences and technical skills that will provide an accelerated pathway to higher education and career progression,” explained Bekki Phillips, Managing Director at In-Comm Training.
“For the first time, someone who has completed a Level 2 or Level 3 Engineering Apprenticeship can accelerate their learning by completing the HNC Higher Apprenticeship that will then lead to their Degree Apprenticeship.”
She continued: “This ultimately means that from starting an apprenticeship at 16 you could have the equivalent of a degree by the time you are 22 - better still you have six years of on-the-job training and experience and no tuition fees to pay.
“From a company point of view, you can access funding through the levy to upskill your people to the highest possible level or even give existing workers the opportunity to broaden their technical horizons.”
Rebecca Macdonald, Faculty of Science and Engineering Associate Dean for Business Engagement at the University of Wolverhampton, added her support: “This partnership gives regional manufacturing and engineering businesses the opportunity to upskill their workforce via a clear progression route from level 2, to HNC and then right through to degree and masters level.
“We are one of the first universities in the UK to offer an accredited fast track Bachelor of Engineering with Honours Manufacturing Engineering programme, meaning that as well as the benefits of seamless delivery via this partnership, employers can benefit from their employees achieving their full potential in less time.”