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West Sussex Apprentice Graduation Ceremony (posted 10 March 2017)

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Celebrations as the West Sussex Apprentices graduate in the Cathedral

West Sussex Apprentice Graduation Ceremony
West Sussex Apprentice Graduation Ceremony

On Tuesday 7th March, the West Sussex Apprentice Graduation Ceremony took place in the Cathedral. The timing of the event was significant as it coincided with National Apprenticeship Week, which is now in it's 10th year. The Graduation Ceremony is important as it celebrates and recognises the achievements of Higher and Advanced apprentices in the county, whilst raising the profile of apprenticeships and their contributions to both the individuals and the employers.

An apprenticeship is a work-based training programme, which leads to a nationally recognised qualification. Anyone living in England over the age of 16 who has completed full-time education, can apply. This year the number of local apprentices has grown faster than the national average, as more 16-18 year olds take the opportunity to earn while they learn. In fact, the year-on-year growth of new apprenticeships in Sussex is 8.7% compared to a national average of 1.0%. Stephen Hillier, West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Children, said before the ceremony 'I'm looking forward to hearing lots of inspiring stories'.

The apprentice graduands enjoyed some light refreshments while they registered and donned their robes. During the very traditional graduation ceremony, there were speeches from guest speakers, including  County Council leader Louise Goldsmith and Ann Swain, Chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, photographs and a presentation. All the happy graduands received a certificate and commemorative pin as their proud friends and family looked on.

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