Treasury Minister visits Imperial for launch of apprenticeship programmes | Imperial News






Helen Whately MP, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, visited the Business School for the launch of two data focused apprenticeship programmes.

The Data-Driven Professional Programme and the Data Analyst Programme are designed to help address the UK’s data skills gap and address key business challenges. The two new data apprenticeship programmes will be delivered by the Business School’s Executive Education department in partnership with Corndel – a leading education and training provider. 

“It was great to visit Imperial’s Business School to hear about the University’s new partnership with Corndel.” Helen Whately MP Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury

Hosted by Professor Emma McCoy, Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience) and David Brown, Director of Executive Education at Imperial College Business School, the Minister heard about how the programmes will teach technical skills and provide meaningful insight to help tackle business inefficiency and organisational agility. 

The Minister also heard from Mr Brown and James Kelly, Chief Executive Officer of Corndel, on how the programmes, which are fully funded by the government’s Apprenticeship Levy, will enhance data literacy so that participants can harness organisational data to make better and smarter business decisions. 

Visit to the Data Science Institute and Executive Education Suite

Professor Mark Kennedy showing the Minister around the Data Science Institute
Dr Mark Kennedy showing the Minister around the Data Science Institute

The visit included a demonstration led by Dr Mark Kennedy, Associate Professor at the Business School, at Imperial’s Data Science Institute where the Minister was shown the possibilities of data, including examples of the College’s research projects on behavioural analysis, data privacy and the Mars Rover.

The Minister also visited the Business School’s new Executive Education Suite and met apprentices from UBS, Harrow Council and Corndel to hear about how they have applied their data skills in their workplaces. The apprentices discussed with the Minister how they benefitted from the combination of Imperial’s world-class teaching and Corndel’s award-winning mentoring and support model.  

Meeting apprentices

Minister Whately working with an apprentice on a data science activity
Minister Whately working with an apprentice on a data science activity

During the visit, Ms Whately took part in a coding activity with the apprentices led by Professor Ruth Misener, Professor in Computational Optimisation. The activity highlighted the crucial role of data science and how it can help to analyse the risks and opportunities in improving supply chain resilience.  

Speaking after the visit, the Exchequer Secretary Helen Whately MP said, “It was great to visit Imperial’s Business School to hear about the University’s new partnership with Corndel. Together they are launching two new data science apprenticeship programmes. Apprenticeships are proven – the vast majority of apprentices go on to further training or employment once they’ve finished their course. We’re increasing our funding for programmes like these to £2.7 billion by 2024-25 to help businesses train the skilled workforce they need.”

Professor Emma McCoy, Vice Provost (Education and Student Experience) said, “Imperial is committed to deploying our expertise in data science to develop innovative courses that will give a broad audience of learners, at all life stages, the practical data skills crucial to keep pace with the needs of rapidly changing careers. We are thrilled to be working with Corndel to be able to deliver these new programmes which directly address the current data skills gap.”

Minister Whately with Imperial and Corndel team and apprentices
Minister Whately with Imperial and Corndel team and apprentices

David Brown, Director of Executive Education at Imperial College Business School, said, “We are delighted to expand our apprenticeship offer with Corndel to include two Data Programmes, as well as Leadership, and to see very great interest from major UK companies. There is a huge need to increase data literacy and data analytics in the UK and so drive innovation, productivity and indeed, employment. It was super to share our research and apprenticeship programmes with the Minister and to see the government’s commitment to this important initiative.”

James Kelly, Chief Executive Officer of Corndel, said, “We really appreciate Treasury Minister Helen Whately seeing for herself the strength of the innovative Corndel and Imperial College Business School partnership. Skills, digital and technology are among her responsibilities, so she will appreciate only too well the value of this close collaboration between business and higher education, which aims to narrow the data skills gap. It’s great to have the government taking such a close interest in the programme, after all, what we all want to deliver are great results for industry and fulfilling careers for learners.”  

The Imperial College Business School and Corndel data programmes will be open to learners from September 2022. 

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