Developing the Young Workforce Inverness and Central Highland team welcome two modern apprentices

Wednesday, 13th September 2017

A Scottish Government programme which aims to reduce youth unemployment and youth migration from the Highland region has welcomed the addition of two new modern apprentices.

Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Inverness and Central Highland recently welcomed Aimee McCormick (19) from Inverness and Rowan Morrison (18) from Drumnadrochit, who will each complete year-long modern apprenticeships in business administration while working full-time with the group.

The decision to offer the two modern apprenticeships is in line with the group’s target of reducing the overall youth unemployment figure by 40 per cent by 2021 and helps to increase the diversity of Highland-based opportunities available to young, local people.

Rowan said: “I’ve loved my new role so far. Coming straight from school was daunting but everyone has been so welcoming and I’ve enjoyed getting started on my tasks.

“Opportunities such as modern apprenticeships are often overlooked in schools – I always felt like going to university was the only option really encouraged by teachers.

“There is no wrong path to employment though, and I want to use my position at DYW to spread the word of what really is available for young people up north.

 “I for one had no idea that there were business apprenticeships available – I always thought they were purely for trades such as joinery and electricians.”

Rowan also hopes to turn her own experience of work into a positive message for school-age children, adding: “My past experience working part-time in hospitality and tourism while at school has turned me into a bit of an advocate for combining earning and learning, so I hope to help spread the word during my time at DYW!”

Rowan’s views are echoed by her colleague Aimee, who said: “I was really looking to do something different. My background is in retail so it was a fantastic opportunity to see what else was out there and develop new skills – and I’m really enjoying it.

“In the past, I’d always struggled with finding a new job as I’d always get the same feedback – that I had no experience.

“Now that I have this opportunity I hope it’ll open new pathways for me as I progress through my career.”

Andy Maxtone, programme manager, DYW Inverness and Central Highland, said: “As a group advocating youth employment, we felt it was important to take heed of our own message and create apprenticeships within our own programme.

“Aimee and Rowan are both fantastic additions to the team, and we’ve already been reaping the benefits of their knowledge.

“The fact that they themselves are young people who have recently entered employment means that their experiences and fresh thinking will help inform future strategies for effective engagement.

“It’s brilliant to be able to provide two local people with an opportunity that could change their lives, and will definitely leave them will some great career prospects and skills that they can draw upon throughout their employment journey.”