The Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union have been very active over recent years supporting apprenticeships across the Civil Service, so when they were asked to help out at an event in Newcastle they were happy to oblige.
PCS Union Learning Representatives (ULRs) were contacted by DWP management to ask if they could support an event at DWP Longbenton in Newcastle on 22nd October with a focus on Apprentices.
DWP Tyneside and Northumbria ULR, Tom Drady-Walsh, rose to the challenge and ran a well attended 30 minute sessions on how ULRs can support Apprentices with Functional Skills (maths and English).
Information was also available on other learning opportunities the PCS Union Learning Fund Project can provide, including WRANX, SkillCheck and the Apprentice Toolkit at a PCS stall. ULRs on the stall handed out literature, gave information to prospective members, and updates were made to the PCS branch app.
The organiser of the event congratulated PCS on their involvement, in particular the clear communication the ULR team sent out to spread awareness of the event.
PCS member Nheid attended the roadshow as she is considering taking up an apprenticeship, Nheid said: ‘
It was an eye opener. All exhibitors were very helpful and any questions I had no matter how silly it sounded they answered. The session where current members of staff already on the Apprenticeship programme was very educational & answered any doubts I had."
I also got the opportunity to talk directly to the HR Apprenticeship team which was very helpful, they talked through the application process answered any reservations that I had and as a direct result of me attending this roadshow I submitted my application for the HR Level 3 Apprenticeship.’’
PCS Regional Learning Organiser, Clare Hownam was pleased with the day, and said:
PCS Union Learning Reps played a vital part in the success of the DWP Apprentice Roadshow in Longbenton, Newcastle, as echoed by management in their closing speech if it wasn’t for PCS and their good links with apprentices then this day wouldn’t have been as successful as it has been’ this has given a great opportunity for PCS to reach out and support apprentices in the workplace.’’
DWP apprentice lead, Julie Lambert added: ‘
I thought that all the stalls looked amazing and colleagues had gone the extra mile to be in Newcastle and share their expertise with colleagues. It was lovely to see Simon from BC Arch and his presentation and really enjoyed listening to our two apprentices who gave a good account of their experience on the apprenticeship schemes both good points and where things could have gone better.’’