Apprenticeships get into top gear at coach company

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BUDDING engineers are being invited to join an apprenticeship programme with bus company Stagecoach.

Stagecoach South is urging school-leavers in Portsmouth with an interest in engineering to put themselves forward for the four vacancies before the search closes in June.

Stagecoach South engineering director, Richard Alexander, says he has high hopes of Portsmouth’s young people.

He added: ‘Local schools are continuing to focus on science, technology, engineering and maths subjects, which means there is a strong pool of talent in Portsmouth.

‘In fact, one of our apprentices, Matt Cunningham, started with us as a body apprentice in Portsmouth and has already progressed to become a body fitter.’

Youth unemployment figures in Portsmouth stand at 3.2 per cent in Portsmouth North and 4 per cent in Portsmouth South.

Mr Alexander says that while the number of apprenticeships Stagecoach is able to offer won’t fix the problem single-handedly, he hopes other local firms will follow suit and give youngsters in Portsmouth a chance.

The company’s apprenticeship programme has been praised by Hampshire County Council.

A spokesman for the authority said: ‘Apprenticeships are a vital way in which individuals can develop valuable skills and experience in the workplace – which is why Hampshire County Council is creating 1,000 apprenticeships over the next five years.

‘We applaud and encourage all other employers, such as Stagecoach South, to participate in the National Apprenticeship programme, which will benefit both young people and ultimately the UK economy.’

For the full range of jobs on offer see visitstagecoachbus.com/Southapprenticeships.aspx