The Open University (OU) in Wales has secured an offer to continue offering funded places on its Diploma apprenticeship in Applied Software Engineering for the third consecutive year.
Established in 2018, degree learning helps employers in Wales develop new and existing staff in IT roles. Apprentices earn a salary with their employer while pursuing a degree with the OU.
The program is funded by the Welsh Government through the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW).
Degree learning uses a mix of academic and work-based learning. There are no formal entry requirements and students are supported by an OU practice tutor. After completing the course, apprentices obtain a BSc (Hons) in Applied Software Engineering.
Graduate apprentice Stephanie Williams said:
One of the great things about the course is that you can explore different topics and it gives you a good base on whether it’s something you want to cover or not. It is a very good option for people who want to change careers.
In my work, I am in constant contact with information security managers, infrastructure managers and software developers.
So being able to speak their language and know what they are talking about really helps me. It’s good to be able to speak their language to carry out projects. Even having just a basic knowledge helps spark conversations.
Louise Casella, Director of the Open University in Wales, added:
Our degree learning program goes from strength to strength. It helps businesses in Wales develop their own talent and prepare for future IT needs. We connect with an ever-growing group of employers – including local authorities, the NHS, small businesses and Fintechs – whose workforces benefit from placing a graduate apprentice.
We have apprentices across Wales, including people living in rural areas who can stay in their community while they work and study. Many of them tell us how much they enjoy blending their on-the-job training with academic learning as they embark on an exciting new career in IT.