In 2019, our Early Careers team piloted the Girls with Skills apprenticeship programme – and it’s been a huge success. Girls with Skills has been designed to educate girls of school-leaving age about our apprenticeships. It also shows them all the exciting career opportunities that the automotive industry has to offer.
44 participants attended the first stage of the programme where they enjoyed an interactive training day at GTG Training with existing apprentices and the Early Careers team. They learnt mechanical skills and also took part in the apprenticeship practical test. 30 participants passed this stage and went on to complete a work experience placement, giving them the opportunity to get a taste of their future job before starting with the company. Following on from this, 13 girls have secured full-time apprenticeships with Arnold Clark.
To celebrate completing the programme, all the participants were invited to a special event with their friends and family. The celebration event recognised the success of each individual and her journey through the Girls with Skills programme. Every participant received a certificate, before a special announcement during which they were surprised with an offer of a full-time apprenticeship with Arnold Clark.
Thanks to the programme, for the first time GTG has an all-female apprentice training group. During their apprenticeships, they’ll receive training so that they can develop and enhance their mechanical skills across a range of disciplines. Disciplines include Light Vehicle Technician, Body Shop, Parts and Administration.
Girls with Skills participant Jessica Jamieson said: ‘I loved taking part in the Girls with Skills programme. My favourite part was my work placement in branch – everyone was really friendly. Girls with Skills really allowed my confidence to grow and I’m so happy to be doing my apprenticeship now.’ Girls with Skills is inspired by our commitment to challenging and changing the stereotypes of our industry. For a long time, the automotive industry has been male-dominated, but at Arnold Clark we decided that a change was long overdue.
Early Careers Manager Suzanne Sherry said: ‘The success of Girls with Skills shows a need for a programme like this in the automotive industry and we are delighted to be taking a proactive approach in welcoming more females into the Group. I am very proud of the inspiring young women who are now full-time Arnold Clark apprentices and look forward to seeing their development and progression throughout their career.’
After Girls with Skills’ success, we plan to continue the programme in 2020. We’re also looking to launch the programme in Manchester in the near future. For more information, contact the Early Careers team at email@example.com.