Wiltshire College has seen its apprenticeship applications nearly double in the past year.
More than 690 people have applied for apprenticeships in more than 30 different occupational areas compared to 391 in August 2016, equating to an impressive 76 per cent increase.
Tony Basham, Director of Business Development, said: “Applications for our apprenticeships have seen a real surge in the past 12 months, proving that more and more people are seeing it as the pathway of choice to get into their chosen career.
“Here at Wiltshire College we pride ourselves on being excellent providers of apprenticeships, working closely with both the employer and the apprentice throughout.
“Our network of employers is ever expanding to meet the demands of people’s aspirations.
“So whatever your career of choice we’re confident we can match your ambitions with an apprenticeship, which is why we have become the first choice for apprenticeships in Wiltshire.”
Apprenticeships offer an alternative to traditional learning, giving apprentices the opportunity to earn whilst the skills needed to gain nationally recognised qualification whilst working alongside experienced staff in the work place.
As well as being an ideal route for anyone wanting to kick-start a specific career, an apprenticeship is a great way for employers to upskill their existing workforce.
The College currently has 12 apprentices based across all four of its campuses in Trowbridge, Chippenham, Salisbury and Lackham.
Molly Yates, is an advanced Business Administration apprentice with the Business Development team.
The 19-year-old said: “I think that when many people think of apprenticeships they think either you become an apprentice straight from school or that it is for anyone wanting to learn trades such as construction, but there are so many opportunities available.
“I studied A-Levels and chose subjects that I enjoyed as I wasn’t sure what career I wanted to pursue at that time but I did know that I definitely didn’t want to go to university.
“After completing I thought about coming to college to study a full time course in Business as it was an area I enjoyed but also wanted to earn money so it was great to discover that as an apprentice I could do both!
“I have learned so much in the five months I have been here so far and have been given lots of opportunities to gain as much knowledge and skills as I can.
“Everyday is different and I am really enjoying every minute.”
Wiltshire College offers more than 70 individual apprenticeships including accountancy, agriculture, commis chef, live events and promotion, horse care management, science manufacturing and welding, and youth work in various levels from intermediate to higher.
Leah Wilkinson, also 19, is from Calne and is an advanced Social Media and Marketing apprentice at Wiltshire College.
She said: “I wanted to pursue a career in marketing and an apprenticeship is a great way for me to do that as I learn lots of different skills.
“I am particularly interested in graphic design and have enjoyed learning to use programmes such as In Design, Illustrator and Photoshop where I can create a variety of different marketing materials.”
For more information about apprenticeships and to view current vacancies visit www.wiltshire.ac.uk.