A training course giving talented learners a leg-up into a career in engineering construction continues to go from strength to strength.
The ECITB’s Introduction to Engineering Construction Course (ITEC) is a 10-month programme preparing learners for apprenticeships and other roles in the industry. This year’s ITEC graduates have been snapped up by major engineering construction industry employers, including Cavendish, Doosan Babcock and Sellafield, and some household names who recognise the excellent foundation the ITEC provides, such as Airbus, Rolls-Royce and Wren Kitchens.
Funded by the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) and delivered by 11 colleges and training providers across England, the ITEC equips young people with the skills, qualifications and behaviours to prepare them for a career in engineering construction.
Of the 145 learners who started the engineering construction course last year, 89% completed the ITEC in June 2019, with sixty learners (45%) already progressing into engineering apprenticeships. A further 36 ITEC graduates have progressed into further and higher education. And seven of the learners went directly into full employment. This amounts to a total of 102 (72%) ITEC graduates progressing into apprenticeships, further education or a job.
Among the cohort, there were 13 female ITECs with six starting apprenticeships and two progressing to higher technical education since completing the course. The increase in female recruitment into the ITEC programme compared to previous years is mirrored by the ECITB-backed Oil and Gas Technical Apprenticeship Programme (OGTAP) in Scotland, which has seen a record female intake this year.
Chris Claydon, Chief Executive of the ECITB, said: “The ITEC programme is an excellent opportunity to gain the initial skills and knowledge required to embark on a successful career in engineering construction and a proven stepping stone into a high-quality apprenticeship.
“With demand for skilled engineers on the rise in the UK, the ITEC programme plays a crucial role in bringing new talent into the industry.
“I’m particularly delighted that more young women are enrolling on the programme, but clearly we need to do more. We all know how important it is to improve the diversity and inclusivity of our industry, which is a why tackling this issue is a key focus of the ECITB’s new strategy.”
Launched in 2016 to offset the drop in apprenticeships offered across the industry, the ITEC offers most of the year one components of a formal apprenticeship. Learners gain a nationally-recognised engineering knowledge qualification, 25 weeks of practical skills training (Minimum of 2 disciplines from Fabrication, Mechanical Fitting, Welding, Mechanical Maintenance, Pipefitting, Electrical Maintenance, Plating) and the industry standard CCNSG Safety Passport.