CAB - 7 Oct 2020 - 10 Oct 2020 - Advice

Education / Interest increases in work experience scheme designed to tackle gender stereotypes

Pupil Freya Laurenson gaining skills in marine engineering during last year's apprenticeship week. Photo: SDS

THE INCREASE in young people participating in a local scheme designed to challenge gender stereotypes in the workplace was hailed in the council chamber on Wednesday.

A total of 13 teenagers are taking part in the project this week, with nine girls having placements in construction and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) fields and four boys gaining experience in care and admin.

It is taking place during Scottish Apprenticeship Week, which runs from 2-6 March.

The scheme launched last year by Skills Development Scotland in partnership with Train Shetland, offering people the chance to spend time in workplaces traditionally associated with their opposite sex.

At a meeting of the Shetland College Board on Wednesday North Mainland councillor Emma Macdonald questioned if there was any feedback from last year’s programme.

Train Shetland’s Kevin Briggs said this year’s number was up on last year’s intake of eight.

He added that over the two years it has been running, all of Shetland’s high schools have taken part.

This year’s applicants have been selected from six schools and they will all undertake placements at council departments.

Macdonald said it “all sounds really positive”.

At the same meeting the principal of Shetland College meanwhile, paid tribute to the role of apprentices in the isles.

Jane Lewis said they were “vital” to Shetland’s economy and are especially important for smaller businesses.