More than 150 young people aged 16-18, selected from over 2,500 applications, have embarked on the new in-house Advanced Apprenticeship Programme for the Premier Automotive Group’s Aston Martin, Jaguar and Land Rover brands. It also marks a new partnership with the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), which has been appointed the qualifications awarding body for the scheme.
As part of their three-year programme, the apprentices will undertake 2-week blocks of training, four times per year, at one of three locations: Gaydon; Castle Bromwich; or Halewood, dependent on their chosen specialism. This is extended to 5 weeks in the final year, leading to an IMI diploma in vehicle maintenance and repair, parts operations, customer service or body repair and paint refinishing and the NVQ level 3, upon completion of the apprenticeship.
Having undertaken the "Dipped in Green" and "Green Blood" induction for Land Rover and Jaguar respectively, apprentices with Aston Martin, Jaguar and Land Rover also have an opportunity to visit the Amazon or Kenya, as part of a week-long environmentally focused community project expedition, for the top achievers.
Christopher Newton, Apprenticeship Operations Manager, who leads a 13-strong apprentice training team, commented:
"This year our dealer network has determined 155 vacancies for new apprentices which is the highest demand so far, and there are over 300 apprentices in total, across the three marques. We have invested heavily in developing a programme second-to-none and I would anticipate a completion rate of at least 95%, which is great for all concerned."
Continued Newton: "We hope to increase our offer to the dealer network with the addition of the IMI certificates in vehicle sales and automotive retail management during next year. This will allow us to offer bespoke training programmes for most career paths within the dealer network, giving a real boost to the competency levels in our industry."
New apprentice and sole female, Kirsty Lakin, aged 16, who is employed at Woburn Green Land Rover, said: "My ambition is to get fully qualified and see how far I can progress. This is a prestigious company to work for and I want to make the most of it."
Sarah Sillars, IMI chief executive, said: "A robust and engaging apprenticeship is fundamental to the future of our industry and the Premier Automotive Group has shown young people and their parents that the retail motor sector offers a fantastic career opportunity for capable and enthusiastic individuals."
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