Yorkshire is '˜most improved region for young people looking for an apprenticeships'

YORKSHIRE and the Humber is the most improved region in England for young people looking for an apprenticeship, according to new figures published in connection with National Apprenticeship Week, which begins today.

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB. He is a passionate supporter of apprenticeships.
Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB. He is a passionate supporter of apprenticeships.

The figures, published today in the iwantobea.com Apprentice Index, shows that young people living in Yorkshire have a considerably greater chance of securing an apprenticeship than their contemporaries in London, the North East or the West Midlands.

The iwantobea.com Apprentice Index compares the ratio of 16-24 year old NEETs (those Not In Education, Employment or Training) to the number of workplaces employing apprentices in the last quarter by region, according to statistics provided by the Department for Education and the Skills Funding Agency respectively.

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In only nine months, Yorkshire and the Humber has risen six places from ninth to third on the iwantobea.com Apprentice Index, with an opportunity rate much better than the average for England. In the third quarter, the region moved up five places to fourth, with an opportunity rate of 2.83.

A spokesman said: “The opportunity rate improved again in the most recent quarter to 2.18, putting the Yorkshire and Humber region in third place.

“One of the reasons for the dramatic improvement in the opportunity rate in Yorkshire and the Humber is because it was the only region to record a decrease in the actual number of NEET 16-24 year olds over the last two quarters.

“During the third quarter of 2017, all other English regions recorded an increase of NEET 16-24 year olds, as always happens at the end of the school year.”

The spokesman added: “In the last quarter, Yorkshire and the Humber recorded a 23 per cent decrease in NEET 16-24 year olds. This was double the percentage decrease in the North East.”

Paul Harris, Director, iwantobea.com, said: “One interesting finding from the iwantobea.com Apprentice Index is that students who are on the border of two different regions should consider widening their search for an apprenticeship in order to improve their chances.”

Theresa May’s Government remains committed to reaching three million apprentice starts in England by 2020. National Apprenticeship Week aims to celebrate the economic value of apprenticeships.

Construction apprentices will go on to earn thousands of pounds more, every year, than many of their university-educated counterparts, according to the latest research by the Federation of Master Builders (FMB).

Brian Berry, chief executive of the FMB, said a career in construction trumps many graduate roles.

He added: “The average university graduate in England earns £32,000 a year whereas our latest research shows that your average bricky or roofer is earning £42,000 a year across the UK. In London, a bricklayer is commanding wages of up to £90,000 a year. Pursuing a career in construction is therefore becoming an increasingly savvy move.

“University students in England will graduate with an average £50,800 of debt, according to The Institute for Fiscal Studies, while apprentices pass the finish line completely debt-free.”