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12 Jun 2014

Skills Minister launches Manufacture your Future

Matthew Hancock, Minister for Skills & Enterprise joined the Black Country Skills Factory today to launch Manufacture your Future - inspiring careers guidance to change perceptions of careers in engineering and manufacturing and signposting young people to the opportunities available with a view to diminishing anticipated skills gaps in the sector.

Pupils aged 13 - 17 years from RSA Academy in Tipton put the innovative Manufacture your Future resources to the test mapping out manufacturing careers with three pathways all leading to an earning potential of £35,000. The portfolio of resources, the only suite of manufacturing careers resources of its kind in the UK aimed at pupils, parents, teachers and careers advisors includes:

• The QuadRun app, an interactive, fun game developed locally which uses Augmented Reality to challenge young people to put their skills to the test. Includes information on High Value Manufacturing (HVM), career pathways and manufacturing role models.

• Folder with Career Map and Wheel which highlight career pathways in the sector including academic, vocational, apprenticeship routes, qualifications, potential costs, job roles and salaries. 

All the resources can be downloaded from which also includes links to external organisations providing careers advice and information.

Mr Matthew Hancock, Minister of State for Skills & Enterprise said: "With figures showing more jobs, growth and higher pay in Manufacturing reported this week, there is no better time to begin a career in the sector. Initiatives such as Manufacture your Future and the QuadRun app help to demonstrate to young people the vast range of pathways to employment available and where it could lead them. It’s great to see the Black Country Skills Factory leading on this in the area and highlighting the importance of careers advice to address potential manufacturing skills shortages and give more young people the chance to reach their potential."

Paul Linton, Skills Factory Board Chairman and Deputy Manager Director at Huf UK Ltd said: "We hope that our Manufacture your Future resources will shake up careers advice for HVM and support the growth of the economy through encouraging more young people to think seriously about careers in this sector. Not just in the Black Country, but nationally, we want to emphasise what needs to be done to safeguard the future of the manufacturing industry with a focus on addressing key skills shortages, this project is just one of the ways the Black Country Skills Factory are making inroads in to achieving this.”

Mr. Hancock also used the event in Tipton to announce a £30 million fund to increase the supply of engineers, to encourage more women into the sector and to address engineering skills shortages in smaller companies. The fund will enable engineering companies to establish training programmes to develop future engineers and boost the number of women in the profession.

£10 million of the fund will be directed to a call to ‘Developing Women Engineers’ and £10 million to a call to ‘Improving Engineering Careers’. A further £10 million will be made available in the autumn to develop engineering skills in smaller companies. The calls have been developed in consultation with professional institutions and leading engineering companies from across the sector.

The Black Country Skills Factory is an employer-led project supported by government funding whose aim is to address the skills shortages in the HVM sector in the Black Country, the only scheme of this kind across the UK to focus specifically on the HVM sector.

For more information on Manufacture your Future visit 

Information on the Black Country Skills Factory can be found at:

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