QA, the UK’s largest tech skills provider, celebrated a major milestone this month by placing its 1,000th learner in a degree apprenticeship role – changing the higher education game by offering new, socially mobile career routes into advanced and in-demand industries.
A degree apprenticeship is a paid full-time job with training that allows the employee to earn an accredited undergraduate or postgraduate degree. QA offers Bachelor’s degree (level 6) apprenticeships in Chartered Manager, Digital and Technical Solutions and Cyber Security programmes in partnership with the University of Roehampton, as well as a Master’s degree (level 7) in Digital and Technology Solutions accredited by the University of Northumbria.
With the introduction of this Master’s-level programme in October 2018, QA is proud to offer learners a seamless learner progression pathway from a level 3 apprenticeship all the way to a potential level 7 (postgraduate degree).
One such graduate, Roberta Baah, started her degree apprenticeship, having completed her GCSE’s in 2012. She began her level 3 as an IT Service Desk Administrator and this year, Roberta graduated with a 2:1 Bachelor’s Degree IT Systems and Networking from the University of Roehampton.
Through the degree apprenticeship, Roberta developed skills and knowledge to contribute to the tech industry, bringing increased value to her employer, as well as earning associated career and social-boosting benefits.
“Degree apprenticeships are creating exciting new routes into industries that traditionally have been overwhelmingly populated by university graduates. More than 30% of our degree apprentices have overcome barriers to housing and services in the UK’s most deprived areas” says Managing Director of QA Apprenticeships Ben Pike.
“We’re breaking down social mobility barriers in that we remove two major obstacles for learners: finances and strict entry qualifications. This makes a degree more accessible to everyone, including those coming from disadvantaged backgrounds. The profile of our degree apprentices is much more diverse in terms of gender, ethnicity and starting point than those pursuing university degrees – for example, we have a huge number of people who don’t have A-levels.”
QA is the UK’s leading IT and business skills provider, specialising in training, consultancy, apprenticeships and postgraduate degrees on a range of technical and leadership subjects. With 22 UK-wide training centres – from state-of-the-art apprenticeships and consulting academies to university campuses and flexible online learning provision – QA offers an unparalleled portfolio of learning solutions to both private and public sector organisations.