Skills for life

One avenue into the profession is apprenticeships and National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) is a great vehicle for highlighting a multitude of careers to prospective candidates. This year’s event runs from 5-11 February and is the 17th annual celebration of apprenticeships.

The week brings together everyone who is passionate about apprenticeships and celebrates the value, benefit and opportunity that they bring. This year’s theme is ‘Skills for Life’. The organisers encourage everyone to consider how apprenticeships can help individuals to develop the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career. It also looks at the other side of the coin and the ability of employers to develop a workforce with future-ready skills. Apprenticeships are a great way to do this.

Focus on apprenticeships

Apprenticeships always remain a key focus at Powers. We have a number of apprentices currently working with us towards qualification and would very much like to encourage more young people towards the profession. At The Survey Association’s AGM in November 2023, our director Lucy Powers presented to the conference about the importance and relevance of apprenticeships and how crucial they are to encouraging students to pursue a career in the geospatial profession.

Lucy is a strong advocate for the power of apprenticeships as a way of learning new practical skills. There is a school of thought that learning a practical skill such as surveying on site and ‘on the job’ is better explained than classroom learning. There are many advantages of the earn-while-you-learn approach to apprenticeships that will appeal to prospective students, many of whom are wary of the financial burden other educational options entail. It’s also not just about the technical skills that you learn in college, but the day-to-day workings of the construction industry, locating sites, etc, which you get to see first hand as an apprentice.

Legacy and learning

Working towards industry-recognised qualifications, apprentices will have a qualification at the end of their course. There are also aspects such as mentoring and knowledge-sharing between different age groups and abilities, the sense of passing acquired knowledge to the next generation. This is key for the longevity and success of any company. An interesting aspect is that for this relationship, as an apprentice learns skills and a ‘trade’, those providing instruction and guidance can learn new methodologies and approaches – due to innovations in the industry and progress in training. National Apprenticeship Week is a key conduit to making these connections happen for the surveyors of tomorrow.

The National Apprenticeship Week website has more information, a toolkit and more, to help you plan and promote your activities and events:

To learn more about apprenticeships at Powers training provider, Riverside Sixth Form College, join the Careers Fair on the 13th March where Powers apprentices will be available to speak to anyone interested in pursuing a career in the geospatial profession.