Lancaster University

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Campus visits for trainees and advanced apprentices

04/10/2008 15:16:59

When you think about the typical university student you may not think about a young person who has previously done an advanced apprenticeship or a work-related training course.

Lancaster University is targeting young people whose background is work-related in a bid to get them thinking about carrying on their education at a higher level after their initial training.

Traditionally, students on vocational courses and advanced apprentices tend not to progress to Higher Education because they do not view it as an option for them and often are unaware of the range and flexibility of courses available. These kinds of students are under-represented in UK Universities.

Lancaster University has organised a three-day Progress 2 Success programme for 70 young people who are taking level two and three courses with Aigburth Training Opportunities in Merseyside (Advanced Apprentices), Accrington and Rossendale College (NVQ students) and Blackburn College (BTEC and OCR National students).

The programme starts on the 23rd April with a day on campus when participants will find out about the many different types of courses available at level four or above (including part-time options) and how they can access these courses. Participants will take part in a workshop on student finances and activities that are designed to develop the skills needed for higher level study. The introductory day on campus will be followed by a day of activities at the students' place of learning.

During a second day on campus - on the 7th May - participants will learn about what University admissions officers are looking for in a good application and the range of careers and salaries open to those who have completed Higher Education qualifications. These sessions include input from Sector Skills Councils, the Careers service at Lancaster and lecturers from Higher Education Institutes across Lancashire.

The Department of Continuing Education (DCE) at Lancaster University has a strong track record in working with young people who tend to think that higher educationis not for them. Each year the department runs many events for young people who have the potential to do well in Higher Education but might not currently be considering this as an option for them. This event is funded by Aimhigher Lancashire.

Programme organiser, Beckie Knight, says: “Progress 2 Success will raise awareness and provide information about Higher Education to a group of potential students that might not otherwise apply to university.

“We knew these students would be hard to engage, so we developed the unique programme in conjunction with those who teach work-based and vocational learners in their current institutions. As a result, the event is relevant and appropriate for those attending and shows how colleges, work-based training providers and a University can work together to help people progress.”