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  • Writer's pictureLinda Andrews - Editorial Assistant, Nuse Online

Sheffield Hallam Pledges £200k To Boost Yorkshire Apprenticeships

Sheffield Hallam University has pledged to contribute over £200,000 to a new regional scheme which will provide significant support to apprenticeships in South Yorkshire.

The Apprenticeship Levy Matchmaking Service, which is being led by the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority (SYMCA), allows large employers to pool unspent apprenticeship levy funding so that it can be accessed by smaller regional businesses rather than being reclaimed by central government.

The University has pledged an initial contribution of over £200,000, the largest of any regional organisation.

Apprenticeships funded by Sheffield Hallam through the matchmaking service will be focused on the voluntary and early years sectors, priority areas which have been identified through close collaboration with local leaders.

Greg Burke, Director of Place and Civic Engagement at Sheffield Hallam University, said:

“At Sheffield Hallam, we have strong civic values and are committed to supporting businesses and our regional economy."

"Apprenticeships play an incredibly important role in upskilling and – at a time when investment into South Yorkshire is beginning to boom – training and skills are key. This initiative will enable local people to access transformational opportunities, and attract new talent from across the UK to help grow South Yorkshire’s economy.”

Professor Sally Pearse, Director of the Early Years Community Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University, said:

“The early years sector plays a vital role in supporting families and giving young children a firm foundation to build upon."

"Having a strong and diverse pool of highly trained and skilled staff has an enormous impact on children’s lives. Providers in the sector face a number of financial and recruitment challenges, but this initiative will help to ease the cost of training new staff, and build a talented workforce for the future.”

South Yorkshire Mayor, Oliver Coppard, said:

“South Yorkshire doesn’t just need a bigger economy, we need a better economy. But if we’re going to get there, and if everyone is going to be able to access the jobs and opportunities that the new economy will bring, we need to make sure people have the right educational skills, so they can access opportunity wherever it might be."

“That’s what our new Apprenticeship Hub is all about; offering people, organisations and businesses a ‘one-stop shop’ for all the information and support they need to get the right skills, in the right place, so we can all benefit from more jobs.”

The Apprenticeship Levy was launched in 2017 and requires large employers to earmark funding for apprenticeships. The matchmaking service will ensure that unused funding is made available to smaller businesses and organisations in the region, giving them the opportunity to take on apprentices with no training costs.

The Apprentice Levy Matchmaking Service was launched alongside the new South Yorkshire Apprenticeship Hub (with which Sheffield Hallam is involved as a provider of degree apprentices) on 5 December 2023. SYMCA‘s first ambition is to bring 300 new high-quality apprenticeships to the region by June 2025.


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