Barclays set to launch first ever degree-level apprenticeship in Banking

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The FINANCIAL — On March 6 Barclays announces it will be launching the UK’s first ever degree-level apprenticeship in Banking.

Set to launch later this year, it will encourage a wider range of people from any social demographic, background or age to enter the industry. For Barclays, it will create new pathways for the apprenticeship programme in the bank, including Corporate Banking and Wealth Management.

While apprenticeships are now available in an ever-growing range of sectors, research shows the majority of parents aren’t fully aware of the variety of these industries. Over three-quarters (77 per cent) admit to knowing about apprenticeships in the plumbing industry and two-thirds (66 per cent) have knowledge of one in hairdressing, but only 37 per cent are aware of ones in financial sector.

Despite the potential for great careers with apprenticeships, recent figures show nearly half (47 per cent) of all students’ parents and 68 per cent of their teachers never discuss apprenticeships with young people as a genuine, viable career route and alternative to university. What is also concerning is that 60 per cent of students surveyed were worried their parents would be disappointed if they chose not to go to university, with 30 per cent citing it as a key reason for attending, according to Barclays.

To further highlight apprenticeships as a viable career routes, the research shows that apprentices earn an average ‘Lifetime Earning Premium’ of £117,600 more than those with just A-Levels – with graduates earning just £2,200 more over a lifetime, or 1.8 per cent more. In some sectors, apprentices’ lifetime earning potential is 270 per cent more than graduates2. Furthermore, with rapidly increasing university fees, the Lifetime Earning Premium gap between graduates and apprentices looks set to diminish entirely, demonstrating that apprenticeships are a viable and worthy alternative to a university education – and will become increasingly important to the UK economy2.

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Mike Thompson, Head of Apprentices for Barclays said: “We want people of all ages and backgrounds to consider a career in banking – a sector that we know is traditionally viewed as something only university graduates work in. That’s why we plan to launch the UK’s first degree –level apprenticeship in Banking; to open up banking to people from all backgrounds, allowing them to earn and learn, without racking up student debt.”

The new apprenticeship standard will be a programme with the option to do a degree or equivalent qualification (level 6 professional qualification). It will cover a range of pathways including: Corporate/Business Banking, Operations, Workplace Pensions, Investment Banking, Investment Management and Retail Banking.

With almost 3,000 participants since launching its award-winning Apprenticeship programme in April 2012, Barclays offers a variety of programmes to suit a range of levels, interests and ages – including Traineeships, Foundation, Advanced, Bolder, Higher & Degree Apprenticeships. Through these programmes, Barclays will offer candidates the opportunity to achieve far-reaching skills, experience and insight. Enabling candidates to earn while they learn, Barclays Higher and Degree Apprentices receive 100 per cent funding, along with a competitive salary and benefits.

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