Vince Cable

19 000 new degree-level apprenticeships funded

The UK government is to invest almost £19 million to develop 19,000 new Higher Apprenticeships.

Around 250 employers, including Leyland Trucks, Unilever, TNT and Burberry, will be involved in delivering the apprenticeships up to degree level.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "Investing in skills is central to our drive to boost business and productivity and make the UK more competitive.

"By radically expanding the number of degree-level apprenticeships for young people, we will put practical learning on a level footing with academic study.

"This is an essential step that will help rebalance our economy and build a society in which opportunity and reward are fairly and productively distributed."

Skills Minister John Hayes said: "By reviving apprenticeships, the Government has started to build a world-class skills system to rival our country's great reputation for academic excellence.

"We've driven up quality across the board, more than doubled the number of new advanced apprenticeships, created new routes into higher levels of practical learning and given employers more control of how the training budget is spent.

"We're now targeting resources even more closely on the skills, firms and sectors that will lead economic recovery."

The £18.7 million announced today is part of a £25 million fund for Higher Apprenticeships announced in the summer. Projects being supported include initiatives planned by City of Bristol College, Chesterfield College, University of Derby, Hull College, Leeds College of building, Middlesex University, North West Kent College and the Northwest Automotive Alliance.

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