College event is big success

AN apprenticeship event has been hailed a success after attracting dozens of employers and hundreds of hopeful jobseekers.

Hartlepool College of Further Education held its annual Apprenticeship Open Evening earlier this month and was overwhelmed by the number of people who came through the doors at the Stockton Street site.

The event comes after the Mail launched our Work in progress campaign to highlight the plight of jobseekers in Hartlepool.

Graham McPhail, director of apprenticeships at the college, said: “We knew from last year that the event would attract a good turnout but never expected so many.

“There must have been easily over 1,000 people that attended during the two hours which is testament to the interest in apprenticeships.”

The college invited over 30 employers they have worked with over a number of years as well as some new firms.

Matthew Oates, from Tracerco, is a new partner with the college who said: “The evening was a great success for us and the college. To talk to so many youngsters who are so keen to work for us was amazing.”

Fred Felton, apprenticeships manager at Caterpillar Peterlee, added: “There is clearly a real need for apprenticeship places and working closely with Hartlepool College we have taken on 12 in the past year to help us meet the needs of our business.”

Jeanette Henderson, from Gus Robinson Developments, said: “We took 150 booklets and completely ran out before the end of the evening!

“We have worked in partnership with Hartlepool College for almost 40 years and events like this, with thousands turning up to talk about apprenticeships, confirms that the college is providing what both students and employees need.”