Two of our apprentices championed National Apprentice Week by meeting George Osborne and Matthew Hancock at 10 Downing Street this week. Christina Smith and James Scott, both successful candidates of the SSE apprentice scheme were joined by Gary Hamilton, SSE’s Technical Training Manager, to promote the new SSE Trailblazer initiative which has gained full government support.

Gary Hamilton, explains: “We are delighted that the government is in full support of the Trailblazer initiative, allowing the industry to lead on deciding its training requirements. It is important that we are involved to set the industry standard and that is why we are committed to working with EU Skills to achieve this

“We believe that one way of maintaining a strong work force is to invest in Apprenticeships. Since 2007 we have recruited over 700 technical apprentices into our business and with a retention rate of 93% this also helps us address the issue of an ageing work force which is being experienced across the industry. We currently run 11 different technical apprentice programmes over our main business areas and we have trained over 1000 soft-skills apprenticeships within our customer service centres.

“We currently have a number schools and colleges in Berkshire taking part in National Apprenticeship Week at our Thatcham Training Centre. Local schoolchildren and students will get the opportunity to take part in a variety of energy related activities including talking to staff who started as apprentices about their experiences.”