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  • The Free School Meals Club presents: Apprenticeships – do they work and could they be for you?

The Free School Meals Club presents: Apprenticeships – do they work and could they be for you?

When: Thursday 10 March 2022Time: 12:00 - 13:00 GMT

Join us for a panel discussion looking at apprenticeships from the perspective of employers, candidates and the social mobility organisations that connect them.

Paul Noble will be joined on 10 March 2022 at 12pm by Kelli Wingfield, Head of Product Management at Uptree, Paula Kemp, Head of Employer Engagement at the Social Mobility Commission and apprentices from the Ministry of Defence, Great Ormond Street Hospital and Mishcon de Reya LLP to discuss:

  • Apprenticeships as an alternative - and perhaps more suitable for you – career route vs. university and graduate schemes;
  • Potential hurdles for apprentices and employers alike: discussing parental stigma/concerns,  possible changes to government policy, and ways of attracting good candidates;
  • Experiences as an apprentice – why the apprentices on our panel chose this route, how they are finding it and what the reception has been like in their industry/organisation; and
  • Whether businesses should consider apprenticeship schemes – what are the benefits and challenges? How has the recruitment landscape changed? How are companies adapting their attraction strategies?

Participant organisations

The Free School Meals Club is a networking group aimed at people working in professional industries and wider businesses who were entitled to free school meals when growing up. They want to provide a platform to showcase the wide variety of talent and backgrounds that are integral to the make-up of the city. FSMC also seeks to lift aspirations by promoting the professions and access to them by people who have overcome similar barriers and challenges. This takes the form of specific networking events and seminars targeting young people.

Uptree is a social mobility organisation that connects a network of young, diverse talent with employers. It does so by offering outreach opportunities, such as work experience, insight days and promoting apprenticeship schemes. Kelli Wingfield is the Head of Product Management with nearly a decade's experience working in education across multiple countries. She has spent the last three years leading Uptree's Education Team to deliver engaging social mobility and outreach activities alongside top UK employers. Motivated by empowering young people to take active roles in their futures, Kelli is passionate about facilitating opportunities for the next generation to develop their skills and confidence. 

The Social Mobility Commission exists to see a United Kingdom where the circumstances of one’s birth do not determine outcomes in life. The Employers team work with employers across multiple sectors to create more inclusive and diverse socio-economic workforces.  Find out more about Social Mobility Commission’s Employers’ programme on www.socialmobilityworks.org and download the 'Apprenticeships that works for all' toolkit here.  A practical toolkit for employers, training providers and apprenticeship practitioners - packed full of guidance and shared best practice to build socio-economic inclusion into your organisation.


Visit the Mishcon Academy for more learning, events, videos, podcasts and reports.

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