NSAR is partnering with the National College for Advanced Transport & Infrastructure (NCATI) to offer Skills Bootcamps in rail.
NSAR is partnering with the National College for Advanced Transport & Infrastructure (NCATI) to deliver new ‘Fast Track to Rail’ Skills Bootcamps in October and in January. Fully funded by the Department for Education, Skills Bootcamps are short and flexible courses that support attendees to build up sector-specific skills and transition into rail careers.
The Skills Bootcamps are specifically focused on attracting new entrants into the rail industry by providing them with a six-week programme of learning at NCATI, followed by a guaranteed interview with a rail employer and access to an accelerated apprenticeship if successful. The design of this short programme ensures that the learning outcomes allow for progression onto either a Level 3 or Level 4 apprenticeship in rail.
NSAR identified an issue with two rail engineering apprenticeships: the completion times are typically 3-6 months longer than anticipated. By providing learners with a few weeks of upfront and intensive training, candidates gain a strong footing in the knowledge, skills and behaviours required by a rail apprenticeship.
Another key objective of the Skills Bootcamps is to support industry growth, attracting large numbers of people from diverse backgrounds to the sector, and quickly. With the rail industry facing a skills gap, training more apprentices is vitally important. NSAR analysis shows that the industry needs to train about twice as many apprentices per annum – 5,000 up from 2,500.
The ‘Fast Track to Rail’ Skills Bootcamps provide learners with:
- a fast-track through induction training
- a unit in ‘Working safely in rail’, one of the mandatory units of the Level 3 Rail Engineering Technician/Level 4 Rail Engineering Advanced Technician apprenticeships
- other health and safety and first aid training
- extra support, including English and Maths tutoring, careers guidance, and the NSAR-led ‘Personal Brand Camp’ that targets personal and communication skills in preparation for interviews with rail employers.
Delivered on NCATI’s two campuses in Birmingham and Doncaster, recruitment has been focused on enabling access by learners facing barriers and/or located in deprived areas in these regions. To this end, the ‘Fast Track to Rail’ Skills Bootcamps have removed the biggest barrier to entry for most learners from under-represented backgrounds: cost.
NSAR is looking for employers in the area who can offer an interview to learners on the completion of their Bootcamp. By offering an interview, employers can gain access to excellent candidates ready to jump into further learning or employment.