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Euan Blair firm to train 5,000 SME students for free

The firm, Multiverse, has launched a £ 30m ride to train more than 5,000 apprentices for free over the next 12 months. It will cov

Euan Blair firm to train 5,000 SME students for free
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The firm, Multiverse, has launched a £ 30m ride to train more than 5,000 apprentices for free over the next 12 months.

It will cover skills such as software engineering and data analysis. The training will be offered free of charge to SMEs and charities, covered with funds transferred by companies such as Amazon, Morgan Stanley and Deloitte.

The training is funded by the government’s Levy Transfer System. All companies with a payroll of more than £ 3 million are required to pay a 0.5 per cent apprenticeship levy. It goes in a pot that can be spent on training costs or transferred to other organizations.

> See also: What does the apprenticeship levy mean for SMEs?

Euan Blair, son of former Prime Minister Tony Blair, talks about the driving force in a presentation at the recent SME XPO to an audience of entrepreneurs. He sarcastically admits that, “My ancient history degree is now as useful as it ever was.”

Now he is the founder of Multiverse, an apprenticeship firm valued at $ 875 million last year.

He had to study for a degree in his postgraduate scheme – investment banking at Morgan Stanley. This, along with his Masters in International Relations, was, “absolutely useless in the workplace environment I was trying to do, to understand financial markets.” He also found it strange that when he looked around, it was all white people and “almost all” men, all from the same handful of universities. “None of us had the divine right to be there,” he says, noting that he has not seen any connection between academics and job performance since.

He speaks of inequality in labor markets, with only four per cent of people claiming free school meals going to a Russell Group university. Minority groups are also consistently under-represented – technology courses are still filled with white men in a world that is changing so fast. “When you walk to a university campus, you still see the same thing as the 1960s,” he says.

“Education is a part of it,” Blair continues. “Look at representation at every level – there’s a real problem.” Difficulty changing a difficult model is a key issue. Blair spoke at an annual conference of university vice-chancellors and was shocked at the extent to which they all agreed with him. “We all learn in different ways,” he notes. “[University] should not be the only option. ”

“A show learning at the beginning of your career is not going to last 50 years,” he says, emphasizing that there must be a muscle of continuous learning and professional development.

Learn more about the apprenticeship opportunities at Multiverse’s website.

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