Global professional services firm EY will offer an apprenticeship to both existing students and new joiners to its graduate programme this year.
Eligible graduates will now work towards their professional accountancy qualification and a government-accredited Level 7 Apprenticeship in Accountancy and Taxation, which is the equivalent of a master’s degree in the UK.
By the end of next year, around 1,000 eligible EY tax and assurance graduates and school leavers are expected to be completing this apprenticeship at the firm, as well as their professional accountancy qualification.
The change will apply to school leavers and tax and assurance graduates who work in England and either joined EY in September 2017, or will join in September 2018.
EY has made the move to better prepare students with the skills and experience needed for the workplace of the future and in support of the government’s aim to create three million new apprenticeships by 2020, to help boost skills and productivity.
Maggie Stilwell, managing partner for talent at EY in the UK and Ireland, said: “[A]s a significant employer in the UK, we recognise that we have an important role to play in training the next generation of business leaders.”
“We also want to help change the perception of apprenticeships, which are now an increasingly attractive option for students of all abilities and backgrounds. We hope that by changing our graduate scheme to align with an apprenticeship, it will help level the playing field for young people and support them in building their careers.”
In October 2017, EY was rated one of the top employers for school leavers in the UK by Rate My Apprenticeship—based on anonymous student-written reviews.