From the 8th to the 14th February, the UK will be celebrating National Apprenticeship Week 2021.  

“Apprenticeships are a fantastic way to learn while you earn,” says Minister for Apprenticeships and Skills, Gillian Keegan, “opening up new and exciting career paths that can transform lives”. 

This annual event is an exciting opportunity, so we’ve put together this handy guide to explore what the week will cover and how it can help you. 

What is National Apprenticeship Week (NAW)? 

For those looking to start an apprenticeship, or simply learn more about which ones are available to them, NAW is a must. The week sees a mix of talks, events, and advice from key figures all about how to apply for and use an apprenticeship to benefit your career.  

There’s a new theme every year, highlighting a certain aspect of apprenticeships, to help focus discussion. Most importantly, NAW is open to everyone.  

NAW logo

What is the theme for NAW 2021? 

The theme for 2021 is ‘build the future’. “It’s been a tough year for everyone, but we want the theme for National Apprenticeship Week 2021 to be a springboard to look ahead to how apprenticeships can futureproof workforces and boost careers”, says Keegan.  

This means that the week will pay particular attention to the impact apprenticeships can have on local communities, businesses, and economies, well into the future.  

There will also be an exploration of technologies and new innovations in apprenticeship training, especially as this year will be affected by the ongoing pandemic. 

Individuals are relying on technology and virtual meetings more than ever, so NAW 2021 will be different, but just as exciting. There will certainly be a focus on the stories of how apprentices have helped businesses adapt and develop during a difficult year. 

Key asks 

To get involved with National Apprenticeship Week 2021, everyone from employers, training providers, and communities are being encouraged to celebrate apprenticeships in three specific ways: train, retain, and achieve.  

  1. Show how they train apprentices, plus future-proof their workforce and careers though apprenticeships. 
  2. Give examples of how they retain apprentices, especially how they gain the skills and knowledge needed by the business, plus showing apprentices thriving, while having an impact on the business.  
  3. Share how they achieve a real return on investment from apprentices, realising the business benefits of apprenticeships, with apprentices progressing in their chosen careers. 

Ways to get involved in National Apprenticeship Week 

This downloadable guide explains how you can get involved on social media and through virtual events. You can also find more information and download the toolkit from gov.uk

A great way to get involved is to fill out the National Apprenticeship Week 2021 Survey, sharing the activities you have planned.  

Keep up to date with National Apprenticeship Week 2021 updates by following @Apprenticeships on Twitter, and the National Apprenticeship Service on LinkedIn

The hashtags to use and to search for updates are #NAW2021 #BuildTheFuture #ASKSeries and #AskAnEmployer. 

The #AskAnEmployer hashtag is particularly useful for hearing how apprenticeships have helped businesses thrive. The conversation will be on Twitter on Tuesday 9th from 12 noon – 2pm. 

Want to share your experience as an apprentice? Use the #AskAnApprentice hashtag on Twitter during 12 noon – 2pm on Wednesday 10th and encourage aspiring apprentices to ask you questions about your apprenticeship. 

On Valentine’s Day, people are encouraged to create a social media post to share what they love about apprenticeships.  

NAW 2021 events 

Events will be virtual, with everyone involved in apprenticeships encouraged to share their stories and experiences. Live Q&A sessions and presentations are a fantastic way to start, but there are some official events taking place to tune in to: 

NAW events

Find out more about construction apprenticeships 

For apprenticeships specific to the construction industry, head to our useful pages: 

What is a construction apprenticeship? and What apprenticeships are available? There are also specific pages for applying for apprenticeships in Scotland or Wales.  

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