The First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, and Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training, Roseanna Cunningham, visited GTG Training in Glasgow today.
The visit coincided with the fifth annual Scottish Apprenticeship Week (18–22 May) that celebrates the opportunities and benefits that Modern Apprenticeships bring to businesses, young people and the economy.
While at GTG Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that an extra 500 Modern Apprenticeship places will be funded over the next year following a £3.8 million investment.
The announcement is in addition to previous investment from the Scottish Government Skills Development Scotland (SDS) announced earlier on in the year, to develop and implement an Equalities Action Plan for better equality within Modern Apprenticeship programmes. The money will be used to encourage more women, minority groups, care leavers and disabled people to take part in the programme.
The visiting ministers met a number of apprentices on their visit, including a number of female apprentices who have chosen traditionally male-dominated courses. GTG is currently training 31 female apprentices on courses such as Motor Vehicle Technician, Motor Vehicle Body Repairer, Motor Vehicle Refinisher and Transport Training.
The number of female apprentices training at GTG has increased in recent years; over the last five years there have been 58 female apprentices through the doors.
Arnold Clark helps provide careers for budding mechanics through the Get into Cars programme together with The Prince’s Trust. The programme has been running for seven years and focuses on training young people from disadvantaged backgrounds aged between 16–22.
Our Ford Rutherglen branch also received a visit from James Kelly MSP for Rutherglen.
To mark the beginning of Scottish Apprentice Week, Mr Kelly spoke to some of our apprentices based at the branch and received a branch tour.