Businesses see benefit of employing apprentices

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PEOPLE from some of the area’s biggest businesses met to discuss the benefits of employing young apprentices.

Representatives from companies such as Elite Engineering, Ahmarra and VT Flagship attended the event in Highbury College, which kick started National Apprentice Week.

Director of skills at Havant-based Xyratex, David Milward, has taken on eight apprentices this year.

He said: ‘My vision is that they will all go on to become chief executives and senior managers, and I’m actually fairly confident that will happen.’

Around 180,000 people completed an apprenticeship in 2010/11, which is an increase of almost 40,000 since 2009. Hampshire had the largest number of these, with 5,730 people completing apprenticeships last year alone.

Josh Peake is currently studying a HNC in computing and system development, while working at Xyratex as an apprentice. The 19-year-old said: ‘You get the best of both worlds really. You get the education you need when you come to college, as well as the experience that you know employers are going to be looking for when you leave.’

For more information on apprenticeships at Highbury College call (023) 9238 3131 or email