Prodigy Learning is proud to partner with Leeds City College, Leeds Rhinos Academy and Redcentric for the launch of their innovative apprenticeship scheme. This dynamic 15-month programme provides future talent with a unique blend of technical and sales-related knowledge and skills.
Leeds City College designed the programme around the business need of Redcentric with the target audience for recruitment to be Leeds Rhinos players with the goal of transitioning retiring players or those who do not progress from the academy into new apprenticeship careers. The programme aims to deliver 50 apprenticeships, offering individuals the chance to transition from the world of sports to business.
In addition to the standard apprenticeship, Prodigy Learning is supporting the partnership with globally recognised Microsoft certifications for the learners on the course. The programme went live in December 2022, with four Redcentric employees who were hired for entry-level sales positions as the first participants. Since then, the first employment offer has been accepted by a Leeds Rhinos Under 18 Academy Player.
The apprentices attend Leeds City College every other week for their Level 3 qualification and have on-the-job training for the rest of their time, with a dedicated mentor for a day. The programme provides the apprentices with three official Microsoft Certified Fundamentals (MCF) qualifications, setting them apart from their peers and equipping them with in-demand industry skills for success in their careers.
Andrew Lenehan, Regional Account Manager at Prodigy Learning, said, “We are thrilled to strengthen our relationship with Leeds City College by providing Microsoft certification for these apprentices. It’s rewarding to play a role in ensuring retiring players and those who have not progressed with a playing career have the best opportunity for a successful career in the technology industry. Having vendor qualifications sets an employee apart, and we are excited to see the results of this project.”
Cheryl McFarlane, Deputy Head of Apprenticeships at Leeds City College, said, “Working closely with Leeds Rhinos and Redcentric, we have tailored the IT Technical Salesperson Apprenticeship to meet the needs of both the apprentices leaving the club and Redcentric as an employer. The combination of the Level 3 Apprenticeship standard and Microsoft professional certification addresses the business needs of Redcentric while keeping the needs of the apprentice at the forefront. Prodigy Learning’s resources and support, and the programme’s structure allow us to tailor the Microsoft Fundamentals exams to the specific needs of each employer and apprentice we work with.”
The launch event took place at the director’s suite in the Leeds Rhino’s stadium in Headingly on February 7th, with representatives from Leeds City College, Leeds Rhinos, Redcentric, and Robert Halfon MP, Minister of State for Skills, Apprenticeships, and Higher Education.
Speaking at the event, Robert Halfon MP, Minister of State for Skills said “Without a shadow of doubt apprenticeships are what I call a ladder of opportunity. They give learners the opportunity to climb that ladder, and at the top of the ladder is job security and prosperity. 92% of apprentices who complete the scheme get a good job or carry on in the company they have completed their apprenticeship in. This is the kind of scheme that is my Dream Scheme. It could not be better. I want every child, in every school, in every college to be encouraged to do apprenticeships and skills qualifications. Not only are they meeting their skills needs, but also the skills needs of our country.”