Building future opportunities for Portsmouths young people

28 Feb 2023

Building future opportunities for Portsmouths young people

The beginning of this month, saw the return of the Apprenticeship Bus Tour, part of National Apprenticeship Week. Whilst at SLR, we find work for skilled tradespeople within the shipbuilding sector, we’ve made no secret of our desire to support and be part of any efforts to improve the lives of people living and working in Portsmouth. We believe in building from the ground upward, which is why we have become a patron of Shaping Portsmouth supporting the Apprentice Bus Tour for our school pupils.

The Apprentice Bus Tour was a three-day event that was carefully planned over the last six months. It took a whole host of people and businesses to put this together but every single person and business that participated was totally committed to promoting apprenticeships as an opportunity for our young people.



What is an apprenticeship?

So, what exactly is an apprenticeship and why is SLR supporting initiatives like the bus tour? Essentially an apprenticeship is a paid job that includes an element of on-the-job training and has a portion of classroom-based learning. It is developed with the employer and a college or training provider with 20% of the apprentice’s working hours spent achieving a nationally recognised qualification. For those pupils keen to jump straight into paid work seeking skills-based qualifications or less inclined towards a full academic experience, an apprenticeship is a massive opportunity for success.

The tour highlights.

1400 students took part in the event which consisted of apprentices from the likes of Airbus, Portsmouth City Council, the Royal Navy, and the Marriot hotel to name but a few. The bus toured 10 local schools and pupils in years 10 and 11 interacted with apprentices from these businesses to gain valuable insight into what an apprenticeship entails. The energy was much like a networking session that provided our young people with an opportunity to ask the questions that they want to be answered. At this critical stage of their life, when making decisions about their options beyond school and college, it’s important that they can engage with individuals who have been through this process.

The tour was a massive success with a 60% increase in participants based on last year‘s numbers.


Building future opportunities for Portsmouth’s young people

It’s efforts like this that went into the bus tour that SLR wholeheartedly supports. As a patron of Shaping Portsmouth, we feel it’s important to contribute to initiatives that improve the lives of everyone in our city, starting with our young people. The Apprentice Bus Tour enabled them to engage with businesses and organisations in the city that could provide them with opportunities for the future.

If young people don’t have dreams or a sense of the doors that are open to them, our industries are not investing in the future. The innovation and new skill sets that come from a rich new wave of employees are critical for progress. When a business creates an apprenticeship programme, it means they are committed to future growth and understand the value of nurturing new talent. That is a vision SLR can get behind!