The sixth annual Apprenticeship Week (11 – 15 March) kicks-off today as apprentices, employers, providers and all those involved with Apprenticeship programmes come together to celebrate their value and importance.
The Week, which is organised by the National Apprenticeship Service, is designed to celebrate Apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals and businesses.
LFE was established in 2004 to manage the Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence (AASE) programme across Football League clubs. Now almost ten years on, LFE, graded as ‘Outstanding’ across all areas of its provision by Ofsted last April and the AASE programme continue to go from strength to strength and be an exemplar of this year’s over-arching theme, that ‘Apprenticeships Deliver’.
Hundreds of those that have completed the programme now regularly compete in the Football League or Premier League, and while the initiative is designed to support young players in their football development, it also provides them with qualifications and transferable skills that will assist them within football, or as and when they move on to alternative careers.
Recent graduates of the scheme include, Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) Nick Powell (Crewe Alexandra now Manchester United), Gael Bigirimana (Coventry City now Newcastle United), Carl Jenkinson (Charlton Athletic now Arsenal) and Johnny Howson (Leeds United now Norwich City).
Other graduates have gone on to pursue University educations in subjects including biology and physics, while some move into employment in careers such as Physiotherapy, the Fire Service and the Armed Forces but whatever route they take the Apprenticeship they have followed provides them with skills for life.
Throughout Apprenticeship Week, events and awareness raising activities are going to roll-out across the country, so to find out more please visit www.apprenticeships.org.uk.