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Melanie Dodd has been appointed skills strategy manager at the Liverpool City Region Apprenticeship Hub.

The hub is responsible for identifying and agreeing the region’s apprenticeship strategy, and works to boost the apprenticeships available to residents of the region, working closely with businesses and young people.

Ms Dodd will work with a team of five to support learners, apprenticeship providers and employers, and raise the profile of traineeships through shows and local events.

“A key area for us will be to promote higher level apprenticeships,” she said.

“We’ll be putting significant resources into providing practical support to schools, referral agencies and communities who are educating young people about apprenticeships as strong and viable career options at 16 and beyond.

“As skills strategy manager for the Liverpool City Region Apprenticeships Hub on behalf of the LCR Combined Authority, I am very excited to be at the helm of an enthusiastic, driven team who are dedicated to ensuring high quality apprenticeships are available and respected as a sound route into professional careers.”


The deputy principal of City College Norwich, Jerry White, has been elected vice-chair of the Mixed Economy Group of colleges.

The MEG is a group of 41 colleges that offer higher education in an FE environment, and allows teachers and managers to share ideas and develop policy.

Mr White began his career as a university lecturer, and is responsible for City College Norwich’s higher education provision and its 1,000 degree-level students.

He has been at the college since 2009, and was previously deputy head of service for adult education at Norfolk County Council.

“We are seeing a clear government focus on the need, post-Brexit, for the further development of higher technical and vocational skills, including the expansion of higher and degree apprenticeships,” he said.

“Now, more than ever, colleges with a higher education offer need to be front and centre in informing and influencing UK policy on higher-level skills.

“I am very excited to be taking up this role with the Mixed Economy Group at such an important time for college-based HE.”


John Pritchard is the new head of apprenticeships at BCS, the chartered institute for IT.

The charity collaborates with the government and industry to develop IT qualifications, and also provides consultancy services to employers.

Mr Pritchard will work to raise awareness of digital apprenticeships, as well as working with BCS partners to improve digital IT apprenticeship standards.

He has previously been awarded a City & Guilds gold medal of excellence for apprenticeship delivery, and established his own training provider called Smart Computing, which worked with Cambridge Regional College to deliver IT qualifications and apprenticeships. Before this, he spent 23 years in the military.

“BCS aims to facilitate the apprenticeship community – training providers, employers, schools and universities – to ensure that we are all working towards giving young people the right opportunities and skills that employers want,” he said.

“This is vital if we are going to avoid the potential massive skills gap which is forecast in technology.”


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