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  • Nine apprentices join emh group

Nine apprentices join emh group

Three women and six men will become multi-skilled trade operatives

Adrian Cheetham and the new 2017 apprentices

Coalville-based social housing and care provider emh group has welcomed the latest intake of nine new apprentices to its award-winning academy.

The apprentices will be based in emh homes’ Property Services teams in Blaby and Ilkeston, and carry out their academic studies at Stephenson College in Coalville. Due to the level of on-the-job training the apprentices will receive, the planned two-year college course is being accelerated to finish in 18 months and will cover all the disciplines necessary to become a multi-skilled operative. The students will then have the opportunity to specialise in one of the skills, ranging from carpentry and plastering to plumbing and electrical work.

The latest group of apprentices includes three women and six men. Feedback has shown that many of the social landlord’s customers, particularly the vulnerable and the elderly, would prefer a female operative entering their home, and so the academy’s recruitment drive positively encouraged women to apply.

Each of the apprentices will be mentored by an experienced operative, with recent academy graduate Karen Penman also acting as a peer mentor to the group. Karen is delighted that more women have been recruited to Property Services, saying: “I don’t think women know that there is even an option for them to go into the trades. More often than not trade work is seen as a man’s job, whereas the truth is that we can do it too!”

Adrian Cheetham, Director of Property Services at emh homes, said: “We recognise that the workforce of tomorrow depends on us identifying and investing in talent today. We are proud to be able to provide young people the chance to learn those crucial skills and behaviours that employers are looking for, and we hope that some of them at least will go on to be our own future employees.”

The academy was established in 2012 as a social enterprise to provide education, training, skills and future job opportunities for local young people. Since 2012, almost 100 apprentices have passed through its doors. It has won many awards over the last five years, and has twice been included in the City & Guilds’ Top 100 Apprentice employers in the UK.

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