Blackpool college helps the drive to solve auto skills shortage

Blackpool and the Fylde College helped youngsters get a taste of working in the automotive industry at the AutoRaise Showcase event
Blackpool and the Fylde College helped youngsters get a taste of working in the automotive industry at the AutoRaise Showcase event
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Youngsters have been given a taste of the skills needed to work in the automotive sector thanks to a new initiative.

Specialists from Blackpool and The Fylde College for Business have attended three AutoRaise Showcase events at The Vella Group sites across the North West.

The events were aimed at raising awareness about AutoRaise – an organisation set up to address skills shortages in the auto repair industry – and its new Multi-skilled Apprenticeship Standard which B&FC for Business is currently delivering for one of the UK’s largest independent automotive repair groups, The Vella Group.

The promotional events, held at The Vella Group’s Workington, Preston and Chester sites, were also attended by local young people, repairers and industry suppliers.

The combined events identified eight potential new candidates sign up for the apprenticeship.

B&FC for Business, the commercial arm of the college, has partnered with The Vella Group, to initially deliver 10 new apprenticeships. The group is committed to ongoing investment in young people, creating new apprenticeship roles and giving existing team members an opportunity to become an integral part of the company’s development by joining an Apprentice Mentoring programme.

Helen Driscoll, HR manager at The Vella Group, said: “The showcase events were a resounding success. The support from AutoRaise and B&FC, along with the industry partners, meant that the events went even better than we hoped.

“Despite us holding them the week after the local schools finished, and with quite short notice, AutoRaise and B&FC worked really hard to ensure that where was plenty of positive interest on the nights.”

B&FC’s partnership with The Vella Group will fill the first ever class of AutoRaise Multi-skilled Apprentices at the college, with more cohorts from other employers.

Claire Jameson, director of business Development at B&FC for Business, said: “I’m delighted with the number of repairers and potential apprentices who engaged withthese events and can only envisage even more interest in the future.

This partnership with AutoRaise and The Vella Group is really leading the way in providing highly-capable and engaged repairers who make valuable employees and can take the industry forward.”