Employers eager to attract more women apprentices as current figures show less than 1% of craft apprentice trainees are female
DIT is seeking more applications from women for its pilot pre-apprentice scheme – Access to Apprenticeship
Ireland’s largest provider of apprenticeship training schemes, Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), is to host an Open Day in DIT Linenhall aimed at encouraging more young women to consider a career in a craft trade on Thursday, 15 March 2018. Exhibitors at the Open Day will include several large Irish employers interested in hiring women apprentices in the transport, electrical, engineering and construction sectors. DIT staff will also be on hand to discuss its pilot pre-apprentice training programme, Access to Apprenticeship.
In 2017, DIT introduced the pilot scheme, Access to Apprenticeship, to address the obstacles facing young people from areas of socio-economic disadvantage from taking on an apprenticeship. However, the Institute is now refocusing its efforts to encourage more young women to consider an apprenticeship as recent figures from SOLAS show only 52 out of the approximately 10,000 state-funded craft apprentices in the country are women.
As Joe Teehan, Coordinator of the pilot programme in DIT explains, Access to Apprenticeship was designed to remove any perceived barriers that may prevent young women from applying for an apprenticeship. “The scheme runs for 12-weeks during which young women can find out for themselves what is involved in being an apprentice. For instance, the Skill Sampling module introduces hands-on experience in a number of apprenticeship areas. The course also includes a two-week work placement with an employer in a sector of their choice, an invaluable experience which helps applicants understand what is expected of them before they commit to an apprenticeship.”
As well as experiencing a variety of apprenticeship trades participants will be encouraged to develop their soft skills such as interview techniques. “DIT will work with each participant as they complete personal development modules developed to improve their self-confidence so that they are ready for interviews with potential employers and, ultimately, their first weeks and months on the job.”
Supported by J.P. Morgan and ESB, phase three of the Access to Apprenticeship course begins on 3 April 2018 with up to 16 places available for young women. Applicants will have an opportunity to do the following:
Sample a range of traditional craft-based apprenticeships in Transport, Construction, Engineering and Electrical sectors;
Understand the structure of apprenticeships, opportunities and employers’ expectations;
Explore new apprenticeships recently developed in the ICT sector, such as the ICT Associate Professional Tech Apprenticeship;
Undertake a two-week work placement with an apprenticeship employer;
CV preparation and interview skills module;
Health & safety training, including Manual Handling and Safe Pass certification.
The Young Women in Apprenticeships event takes place in DIT Linenhall (opposite the main DIT Bolton Street building) on Thursday 15 March between 11 am and 3 pm. Attendees will be invited to tour DIT classrooms and workshops and will have the opportunity to speak one-to-one with DIT staff about the different kinds of apprenticeships that might suit their interests. A number of seminars featuring hiring employers and women working in trades in many sectors will also be scheduled throughout the day.
For more information about the Access to Apprenticeship programme including how to apply, please visit http://dit.ie/accesstoapprenticeship/.