England’s first Degree Apprentices in Embedded Electronic Systems graduate from Portsmouth

The University of Portsmouth  celebrated its first cohort of Degree Apprentices at a special event last week.

Liam Geoghegan, Portsmouth Water

The nine apprentices were awarded their apprenticeship certificate, issued by the Institute of Apprenticeships (IFA), following the successful achievement of their apprenticeship and completing the end point assessment process.

The apprentices are the first in England to be awarded the newly formed Embedded Electronic Systems Design and Development Engineer Degree Apprenticeship. Six of the apprentices achieved a First Class Honours award.

The apprentices, who are all based in local engineering companies ranging from Sonardyne to the Royal Navy, have not only achieved their degree, but English and Maths at level 2 and all the Knowledge, Skills and Behaviours as defined in the apprenticeship standard.

Mike Punt, Director of Learning at Work at the University of Portsmouth, said: “It is a credit to the nine individuals, employers and university staff that these apprentices have successfully completed their apprenticeship with flying colours. Our degree apprenticeships demonstrate how the key relationship between business, university and employee works to the benefit of all and in particular, allows the apprentice to learn new knowledge and skills to progress in their chosen career.

“The University is leading the way on degree and master apprenticeships and is meeting a key demand from industry to upskill new and existing employees using the apprenticeship model.”

James Kinsey and Josh Hall, Sonardyne

Jimmy Page, an apprentice at Sonardyne, provider of underwater acoustic, inertial, optical and sonar technology, said: “I think I’m more used to the working world than other people my age. You learn a lot of practical skills on a degree apprenticeship and I’ve had the opportunity to apply my knowledge to projects at work.

“You don’t end up with a debt, you earn a bit of money and get used to working life.”

Josh Hall, also an apprentice at Sonardyne, added: “It’s been great because we have a way of applying what we have learned. We can already map out what we need and then apply the skills and knowledge to the workplace very quickly. I think it’s a really good system.”

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