A NEW man at South Tyneside College is challenging local firms to take on apprentices.
Ian Fawdon, 50, who has worked for blue chip firms including Nissan and LG Electronics, is heading up a pioneering training team which will approach companies to offer them bespoke college training in key areas.
One of the big threats to our economic growth plan is the skills shortage.
This will complement the college’s current training in engineering skills – areas where companies are experiencing acute skill shortages.
His work will include promoting the value of apprenticeships.
Mr Fawdon, from East Boldon, said: “There are lots of opportunities out there for businesses to improve, and I’m very keen to develop the college’s manufacturing offer to help them do that.
“One of the big threats to our economic growth plan is the skills shortage. South Tyneside College can help with that.
“I will look mainly at small and medium-sized firms, but the problems faced are universal to almost all companies, and I can address issues that any manufacturer has.”
Mr Fawdon, a father-of-three, and governor at Whitburn CoE Academy, added: “The apprentice route delivers people who genuinely want to work in manufacturing.
Alison Maynard, principal of South Tyneside Professional and Vocational College, said: “Ian is very well-known and vastly experienced in the world of manufacturing, and his appointment will add greatly to our already highly developed vocational programmes.
“It is essential that employers across the North East know the role that South Tyneside College can play in supporting them, in developing the skilled workforce of the future.”