Nelson and Colne College and Accrington and Rossendale College marked National Apprenticeship Week and National Careers Week in style – culminating with a Careers Expo and a Q&A with Pendle’s MP on his pathway into politics.

Nearly 1,000 visitors, including school and college students, job seekers, and those seeking a career change, attended the ‘bigger and better’ Expo at NCC – all looking to find out more about the wide range of Apprenticeships, work experience, volunteering and progression opportunities that are available on their doorstep.

Andrew Stephenson MP also visited the College to speak with A Level Politics students and help them get an ‘Apprentice MP’ experience for the day. Andrew spoke about his role, his progression and how he has carved out a successful career as a politician.

These opportunities concluded a successful National Apprenticeship and Careers Week, which saw both Colleges take part in an array of activities, including ‘Back to the Floor’ opportunities at NCC’s employer partner Panaz with Vice Principal Alison Rushton, and ARC’s employer partners Rosslee Construction and Freddie’s Hair Salon with Principal Amanda Melton and Head of Work Based Learning Debbie Howard respectively.

A week-long campaign promoting the college’s Apprenticeship offers also took place on social media, and NCC’s and ARC’s expert Apprenticeship Team were out and about talking to aspiring Apprentices at school lunch-time drop in sessions.

Level 3 Engineering NCC student Ockay Mudumo, 19, attended the Expo, and said: “I came to the Expo wanting to find a work placement and I have got one at acdc which is great for me. I’ve found it a really inspiring event and college is very helpful in supporting your progression.

“I really enjoy Engineering – I enjoy the CAD and the Maths involved in it and I would like to become an Electrical Engineer in the future, and to start my own construction company.”

Protec Fire Detection attended the Expo and Estelle McGuigan, the company’s Production Manager, said: “We wanted to support National Apprenticeship Week as Apprentices are extremely important to the success of the company. We are committed to supporting Apprenticeships and we take on four each year with NCC.

“Our retention rates are high, and during the course of the Apprenticeship, where specific interests and skills become more evident, we encourage Apprentices in these areas. This is to ensure that they are best placed to take up opportunities with us at the end of their Apprenticeship, whether that is in research and development, service, production or installation.”

The Calico Group was another organisation at the Careers Expo. Carmel Roberts, The Calico Group’s Learning and Development Manager said: “Our stand had a consistently strong amount of interest throughout the day and we were very impressed with the enthusiasm and commitment students and people showed towards taking up a career with The Calico Group.

“We work with NCC to support our Apprenticeship programme and we would recommend the college for Apprenticeships. I am confident that we discovered new Apprentices and future work colleagues at the Careers Expo.”

Nelson and Colne College is the number one college in the country for overall Apprenticeship achievement at all ages and levels, in the National Achievement Rate Tables, and is the number one college in Lancashire for employer satisfaction according to the latest FE Choices Employer Survey.

For more information about Apprenticeships by Nelson and Colne College contact 01282 440319 or visit

For further details about Accrington and Rossendale College’s Apprenticeship offer, please contact 01254 389933 or visit