Wells MP Tessa Munt on apprenticeships drive with Strode College
By abbie_wells | Tuesday, March 12, 2013, 11:28
Strode College in Street has joined forces with local MP Tessa Munt to raise awareness about apprenticeships during National Apprenticeships week.
Tessa Munt with Party Packs owner Kate Turner and her three apprentices
The college offers a number of apprenticeships, meeting the needs of students and local businesses, from accountancy apprenticeships to dog grooming.
Party Packs, is a Westbury-sub-Mendip based online mail-order company, providing party supplies to businesses and individuals. Strode College recently helped them recruit three young apprentices.
Kate Turner set up Party Packs 26 years ago and she now employs 25 staff, including three apprentices.
She said: "We need more staff to help grow the business, but in the current economic climate I was concerned about taking on another full-time member of staff.
"I wasn't sure about apprenticeships to start with as I was concerned they were a way for employers to get cheap labour, but having seen how much my business and the apprentices have benefited, I am now hugely enthusiastic about the scheme."
After visiting Party Packs and learning about the apprenticeship scheme, Tessa Munt, MP for Wells commented: "Party Packs is a fantastic example of how a local company has embraced the scheme to grow and improve the business while providing great work and training opportunities for three local young people."
Graham Knight, Head of Business Development at Strode said: "At Strode we bring employers and people together and help businesses plan and deliver apprenticeships that are of real value for them and their apprentices."
"We are delighted to have seen an increase in the demand for apprentices from businesses across Somerset, and to have developed new apprenticeships to meet the needs of local companies.
"However, there are many more young people who would like to take up an apprenticeship, and this will only be possible if more employers make opportunities available."
The £1,500 Apprenticeship Grant was introduced by the Government last year to encourage eligible small and medium sized businesses with less than 1,000 employees to take on an apprentice.
This grant has been extended until December 2013 and eligible employers can also now claim the grant for up to ten apprentices.
For more information about apprenticeships and National Apprenticeship Week call Strode College apprenticeship team on: 01458 844553.