Two of Calderdale Council’s talented rising stars have helped to shape the future of apprenticeships in the North of England.
Michelle Newman, an apprentice in the Council’s recruitment team, and Siddique Mohammed, who started as an apprentice and has now secured a job in the finance team, were invited to attend the Northern Powerhouse Apprentice Summit at MediaCityUK.
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They joined 150 other Northern apprentices from a range of sectors to listen to and meet leaders, influencers and policy makers, and to put forward their own ideas on shaping future apprenticeships and the Northern Powerhouse.
Michelle said: “I felt extremely honoured to represent Calderdale Council at the Apprentice Summit. I presented to the Summit on how apprentices add value in the workplace.
"I left the day feeling inspired and decided to apply to be a Young Apprentice Ambassador. I hope to champion the opportunities available and help others apply for apprenticeships. I believe on the job training is a fantastic way to gain new skills and experience and I am very proud to be an apprentice.”
Siddique said: “It was eye opening to see so many varying individuals who had chosen apprenticeships to further their careers and develop themselves. The summit also involved group work and speeches which were focused on the current issues as well as improvements with apprenticeships for both apprentices and businesses.
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"My personal experience of being an apprentice at Calderdale Council was a positive one, which provided me with skills, experience and qualifications for my future.”
Co-hosted by the Northern Powerhouse Partnership (an independent body representing business and civic leaders across the North) and Barclays, the event included speeches from Mayor Steve Rotheram – Metro Mayor of Liverpool City Region, Head of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership Skills Campaign and former apprentice; Lucy Powell MP – member of the House of Commons Education Committee; Sandy Lindsay MBE – Chair of the Skills Group for the Institute of Directors; and Mark Donnelly – Apprenticeships and Skills Manager at BAE Systems.
Coun Daniel Sutherland, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning, Housing and Environment, with responsibility for skills, said: “Supporting people into high-quality apprenticeships and nurturing talent are priorities for the Council, as we know how important it is to help people into jobs and assist businesses to develop.
"Siddique and Michelle are two of our amazing success stories, and we’re delighted that their skills have been recognised on a national stage.”
With unprecedented levels of regeneration and investment in the borough, growing talent and helping it to thrive is a key part of the Vision2024 for Calderdale – what the borough will be like by the time it reaches its 50th birthday.
The Council currently has 27 apprentices of all ages working in a range of services. Anyone can apply and the Council has a strong commitment to providing opportunities for children looked after and care leavers, to help people across Calderdale’s communities to reach their potential.