First step on ladder

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NOTTS County Council is recruiting 50 new apprentices, helping young people get on the first rung of the employment ladder.

Recruitment has started for the placements in a range of roles, from labourers and administrators to librarians and youth workers.

The roles are open to 16-18 year-olds and are based throughout the county. All the placements offer a minimum of 12 months paid work experience and help to gain a NVQ Level 2 qualification.

Job interview and application training will also be offered to support apprentices when they are applying for permanent employment.

The authority launched its apprenticeship scheme last year and currently has seven apprentices on its books.

According to jobless figures released last week more than 750 16 to 18-year-olds in Notts are unemployed or not in full-time education.

And with hundreds more likely to be pondering their next move after leaving school, that number is predicted to rise dramatically in the coming weeks.

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Futures is recruiting on behalf of the county council. All the positions are advertised on their website at www.sortitonline.com

Recruitment is open now and all the positions should be filled by September.

Coun Andy Stewart, chairman of the personnel committee said the county council is committed to reducing youth unemployment and upskilling the local workforce.

“As one of the county’s largest employers, we should set an example to others by investing in apprenticeship schemes and our young people,” he said.

“Covering such a broad range of services and disciplines in locations throughout Nottinghamshire means we can offer an exciting mix of opportunities for apprenticeships - from placements with our trading standards team through to maintaining roads and even working with other young people in our Youth Service.”

“Apprenticeships are a viable alternative to full-time education, giving young people a chance to earn while they learn and gain hands-on work experience which will boost their chances when looking for employment further down the line.”

The drive is being backed by Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce.

Chief executive George Cowcher added: “Apprenticeships are an essential element of creating the workforce needed to sustain the future economy here and employers of all sizes and from all sectors have a part to play in developing such a highly-skilled local labour pool.”