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Employers’ advice sought on new 14–19 Manufacturing Diploma

As from September 2009 a new 14–19 qualification will be made available, which will change the way vocational skills are developed for young people. From 2011 all young people in England will be entitled to study the new Manufacturing Diploma, giving them a fast track into their chosen career.

The Manufacturing Diploma will be designed give young people a real understanding of the practical skills and knowledge required to work in manufacturing in the UK, facilitating their entry into employment and providing the manufacturing sector with a steady flow of young recruits with work-ready skills and attitudes.

To achieve this, the content of the diploma will be defined and shaped by manufacturing employers to meet the requirements of the sector, providing learners with the skills employers identify as the ones they need. To this end Proskills, the Sector Skill Council (SSC) for the extractives industry, is asking employers to participate in the consultation process, as their input will be crucial if the diploma is to have its full impact.

To get involved, employers are requested visit the new Manufacturing Diploma web site,, and sign up. Signatories will receive the latest news on developments and be kept informed on new areas of consultation, as well as having ample opportunity to express their own views.

Terry Watts, chief executive officer of Proskills, said: ‘The exciting thing about this new diploma is that it is being driven by industry, bringing the content and structure of the diploma absolutely in line with the needs of industry and laying an important foundation for a range of initiatives to help close skills gaps and reduce skills shortages.

‘Furthermore, it will give young people a rewarding alternative to the traditional academic route, allowing them to combine practical elements with theoretical aspects, providing them with the knowledge and skills they need to have a positive impact on their working world.’

Proskills is working closely with four other SSCs — Improve (food), Semta (engineering), Cogent (chemicals) and Skillfast (textiles) — to ensure complete and comprehensive coverage of the manufacturing industry.

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