The oil and gas sector has renewed its backing for a major apprenticeship scheme that organisers hope will get more females and companies on board.
Recruitment has begun for this year’s intake of apprentices to the Oil and Gas Technical Apprentice Programme – OGTAP – that has already steered around 1,500 young people into the industry over the last two decades.
The charter setting out the governing principles of OGTAP – and its commitments to apprentices by companies taking part – has been updated due to the growth in number of participating companies and legislation changes.
It is signed by Oil & Gas UK and the Offshore Contractors’ Association on behalf of their participating members, and OGTAP is managed by the skills body OPITO and the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB).
Dr Alix Thom, Workforce Engagement and Skills Manager with Oil & Gas UK and former Chair of the OGTAP Steering Group, said:
“There is always a big demand for an OGTAP place which is not surprising given the many exciting and diverse opportunities this industry offers. Many previous apprentices have gone on to hold varied and senior roles. This year we expect to recruit around 55 apprentices and we’d really like to see more females and people from ethnic minority groups applying as these communities are under-represented in both the offshore population and OGTAP. We’re also keen for more companies to get involved in the scheme which already has the backing of 17 oil and gas operators and contractors.”
Paul Atkinson, Chief Executive from the OCA, said:
“The oil and gas industry remains a great place to work. OGTAP is a wonderful opportunity for people from all backgrounds to lay down the foundations of an interesting and rewarding career. We are very keen to widen the diversity of applications. There will be opportunities in the North Sea for many years to come. We would encourage anyone who is interested to apply as soon as possible.”
OGTAP is open to those looking to become apprentices in one of four areas: electrical maintenance, mechanical maintenance, process operators and instrumentation and control maintenance.
Applications for OGTAP places close on February 16.