Recycling firm and college launch apprenticeship scheme

Representatives from Ward Recycling visited Derby College to talk about on-the-job learning opportunities.
Representatives from Ward Recycling visited Derby College to talk about on-the-job learning opportunities.

A family-run Ilkeston waste management business has teamed up with a leading regional college to launch an apprentice recruitment drive.

Ward Recycling and Derby College have established a new partnership to set up what it is calling an employer academy.

It is the latest in a series of efforts by the college to bridge the gap between education and the workplace, and is designed to channel help students progress into roles with Ward over the next few years.

Ward director James Balfour said: “As well as looking to recruit apprentices through Derby College in the short term, we will be selecting business students from the Roundhouse to join the employer academy.

“We already take people for work experience so this is the next step. The students will gain a wide range of experience at Ward and we will also be setting special projects for them to complete as part of their study programme.”

To launch the scheme, Ward employees recently gave a presentation at the college where they talked to 100 business students about the industry and the career opportunities available in IT, accounting, customer service and business administration.

James said: “By giving them an insight into our industry and experience in the workplace, we hope that they will be better placed to apply for apprenticeships at the company at the end of their study programmes.”

Derby College deputy principal April Hayhurst said: “We are delighted to be working with Ward both on their apprenticeship provision now and through our employer academy programme.

“This two-pronged approach will enable the company to invest in their future workforce and give them the talent pipeline to further grow their business in the medium and longer term.”

Ward, which employs 250 staff across sites in Ilkeston, Chesterfield and Swadlincote, will take on three apprentices at a time starting later this year.

For more details, visit www.derby-college.ac.uk or www.ward.com.