Apprentice Trailblazer – Investing in Talent

Investment in young people and development of their talent is part of Curtins DNA, being traced back to our founder Bill Curtin who stated in 1961 that “Youngsters can run this company.” This quote is proudly displayed on the wall of all our offices for every staff member and visitor to see.

Our passion for and belief in developing young people is a golden thread that runs through the company. For instance, we established the Curtins Academy in 2014 for graduates to develop their careers across all our 7 Specialisms; and not just in technical excellence.

I share this view and it’s why I am delighted to be involved in setting up the Trailblazer programme for Transport Planning Apprentices. The government has backed employer-led Trailblazer initiatives to replace existing Apprentice training programmes and provide greater benefit to employer and apprentice through a more relevant and higher quality apprenticeship standard.

After a year of developing the standard we are now at the exciting time of working with Leeds College of Building to develop and prepare the taught course element of the Apprenticeship Programme.

Based on a number of weeks of study the Apprentices will be taught a full and varied curriculum of transport planning topics including: surveys; analysis; modelling; policy and assessment. This will be backed up by site visits, self-learning and project work during the rest of the apprenticeship.

At the end of the programme each apprentice will have gained sufficient knowledge and experience for a BTEC qualification and be ready to obtain EngTech Engineering Technician Status with the Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation. Further onward progression will also be enabled to achieve higher qualifications and career progression within Curtins. All of this whilst working and earning.

The class of 2016 is currently being recruited including a number of apprentices for the Curtins Transport Planning team. It will be interesting to be part of their journey and help them fulfil their potential within the learning culture of Curtins.