Championing Hard Services Apprenticeships
ABM UK has rolled out the Junior Engineering Engagement Programme (J.E.E.P) it piloted last year to nine schools in London, Leeds, Manchester and Bradford.
The sixteen-month programme will offer more than 150 students the opportunity to immerse themselves in training modules offered by the scheme's education delivery partner, The Transformation Trust.
Introductory modules are being offered in a range of hard services areas, including electronics and cooling systems.
Discussing the programme, ABM UK director, Adam Baker, said:
"We are delighted to be in a position where schools across the country are interested in the J.E.E.P initiative and to be working with triple the number of students in comparison to our pilot year. However, in order to change perceptions, we need to make the programme scalable. That’s why we will be making the programme available to teachers all over the country so they can implement it themselves, with our support.
"Research conducted last year1 brought to life just how big the perception problem is that our industry is facing; for example, we found that over a third of parents don’t know what an apprenticeship is and a further third see apprenticeships as a last resort for young people who fail exams.
"However, the J.E.E.P pilot proved that there is an appetite for programmes like this and that the young people involved are open to learning about new industries and alternative paths to success, other than just university."
Cate Smith, Senior Programme Manager for the Transformation Trust, said:
“We were delighted when ABM UK approached us and asked for us to be a part of this programme. Being the first of its kind in the UK means we can hopefully pave the way for other initiatives like this, as the end goal for the FM industry is to close the skills gap.
“We believe initiatives like this are a great way to introduce students to a new interest through fun activities and experiments. It’s our job to deliver these modules in an engaging way to ensure the students leave excited about their potential future in FM!”
Tom Rice, Careers Lead at Oak Wood School in the London Borough of Hillingdon, commented:
"The first module was a complete success with our students. It was clear from attending on the day that a lot of thought had gone into the planning of these modules. During the first session, our students carried out experiments on mould, heat and conduction, alongside the theory of FM and the definition of clever. It was great to see our students so engaged in the course. They’re really looking forward to module two!"
Corporate supporters of the programme have included Helistrat, SMI – Workwear, Trinity Fire & Security, Edmundson Electrical, Diversey and Westbury Group.
Visit the the J.E.E.P website at www.jeep-abm.org.