HEFCE funds new Keele Health Apprenticeships Hub

Posted on 05 October 2017

Keele University has secured £82,000 from the Higher Education Funding Council for England’s Degree Apprenticeships Development Fund to establish the Keele Health Apprenticeships hub.

Healthcare is a priority sector for the local area, and apprenticeship delivery presents an opportunity to positively impact on local skills needs.

The Keele Health Apprenticeships Hub will be part of the preparations to develop apprenticeship delivery in nursing and related healthcare disciplines for 2018.

Funding will also allow Keele to work with employers and develop resources to support prospective apprentices and their advisors.

Dr Mark Bacon, Director of Research, Innovation and Engagement at Keele University, comments:

“As an institution we are committed to developing high quality apprenticeship delivery to meet the needs of regional and national industry and services. As a model of education, it offers employers an opportunity to access high quality learning which can have ongoing impacts in an applied workplace setting, and provides apprentices with the opportunity to study for degree and higher-level qualifications.”

The Keele Health Apprenticeships Hub is part of a total of £4.8 million being awarded by HEFCE to universities and colleges across England this autumn to develop new degree apprenticeships for students starting in September 2018.

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Designed by employers, higher education providers, and professional bodies, degree apprenticeships enable the development of high level skills, providing an alternative route to a degree and a career. Bringing together higher education study with paid work, degree apprentices spend part of their time in study and part with their employer. Increasing the number and range of degree apprenticeships allows more people to access higher education opportunities and develop in the careers of their choice, earning while they learn.

Dr Bacon continues:

“Our apprenticeships will be as highly esteemed as our traditional degree delivery, and will build on Keele's sector-leading approach to higher education, routed in our original founding principles and charter.”

The successful projects involve more than 60 higher education institutions and further education colleges and will aim to develop 4,500 new apprenticeship places.

These awards form the second year of the £10m, two-year Degree Apprenticeships Development Fund programme. In the first year £5 million was awarded to 18 projects involving 45 higher education institutions and further education colleges.

Keele University is exploring other standards aligned to its existing curriculum in order to expand its apprenticeship offer across other discipline areas.