BellTime Magazine BellTime 11-5 - Page 2

BellTIME BellTIME > > > FOREWORD “My message to any student thinking about their career is simple – employers need apprentices. And the business leaders of today value young people who choose this career path as highly as someone who chooses a course of study at college or university. Apprenticeships are fast becoming the top-rated way of getting a qualification – often at degree level, enviable skills, experience of work and life, and all of this while being able to earn. More opportunities than ever before are being created in this area. There are the traditional sectors like the crafts and hospitality and there are the new career paths into sectors like insurance, finance and accounting, fin-tech and ICT. Go to to check out what is on offer. In January I was fortunate enough to see apprenticeships in action at Combilift in Monaghan. It is opening its doors to young people and giving them an insight into a multi-million euro manufacturing industry, supplying state-of-the-art machinery to companies around the world. It is just one of the companies on board with the Government’s ambition to see a total of 50,000 people enrolled on apprenticeship and traineeship programmes by 2020 – that is 14,000 enrolments every year. 2 Expanding the opportunities for school leavers and young people is a key priority for this Government. Schools, teachers and guidance counsellors play a hugely important role in supporting our young people and helping them to make independent choices on their journey into a career. So too do the parents, families, friends and role models in the community and local clubs. Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh TD All of us need to see the huge transformation that is taking place in the At these events you will get the best further education and apprentices sector. advice, the right guidance and the chance to hear first-hand from those The employers are leading the way. who know what is best. Their attitudes towards graduates from apprenticeships and Post-Leaving Cert I want to see more initiatives to bring courses tell their own story – they are vocational education and private rated as highly as graduates from industry together. We are responding to universities and third-level colleges. the new demands of the workplace. We are investing to open doors for Not only that but employers will tell you young people who are moving from that graduates of further education have school to careers. We are ensuring better skills when it comes to team- lifelong learning. Our education system working, they have more commercial is on course to be the best in Europe awareness and they are more likely to and apprenticeships are key to our think like an entrepreneur. ambitions. It is a massive vote of confidence in the sector. I urge students to think about every single avenue open to them before I look forward to the School Summit leaving school. You are facing into a 2019 sponsored by ABP, taking place rapidly changing world of work. We are on 16th & 17th September in The expanding the opportunities to set you National Show Centre, Swords, Co on the right path and to give you the Dublin, and I know that the Ireland best preparations for a career and for Skills Live event and its three day life. Use these events to test the expo from 21st to 23rd March in RDS possibilities and seize the initiative to Simmonscourt, Dublin will be a major boost to bring apprenticeships learn and earn. and traineeships into the 21st century. 3