Update: Apprenticeships – HE Trailblazer

A group of universities in England has been working together, with support from UUK, UVAC, Association of University Administrators (AUA), Association of Research Managers and Administrators (ARMA) and the Higher Education Academy (HEA) to develop apprenticeship standards for three roles: Academic Professional, University Administrator and Research/Project Funding Manager for the HE sector.

An update on the current position is provided below:

·         Since the initial submission of expression of interest to BIS from 16 employers (HE providers), partners and professional bodies the number of employers (HE providers) involved has grown to 50 plus 10 representatives from partners and professional bodies. This number continues to increase each week and the Chairs are keen to invite all interested HEIs to join the trailblazer group.

·         Prior to the EU referendum on 23rd June 2016 the Chairs of the HE Trailblazer received an invitation from the Skills Minister (Nick Boles) to submit additional information. This clarified the emphasis on inclusive engagement with the sector and confirmed differentiation from other apprenticeship standards in existence or under development. The turbulence in Westminster following the referendum has delayed the response to this submission but BIS officials have confirmed that this will be received by late-August from the new Skills and Apprenticeships Minister (Robert Halfon MP).

·         A Steering Group and a series of Working Groups, intended to develop the standards, are being established and will begin work in September.

·         UUK has been successful in securing funding from HEFCE to provide secretariat support for the Steering Group and the Working Groups and to help the trailblazer to achieve its aims for the sector as a whole.

Next steps:

·         Please contact Kathryn Hague, Executive Officer, Vice-Chancellor’s Office at Southampton Solent University ([email protected]) if you are interested in joining the trailblazer group