Bankers invest in degree-level apprenticeship

Barclays went in to job centres and its own branches to tout for people who fancied seizing the chance to aim for a top job

The door to a job in the world of investment banking has been opened wider by Barclays. It is offering groundbreaking degree-level apprenticeships, open to candidates who may have struggled to make the most out of their first chance in education.

Instead of sifting through the normal round of applications from Oxbridge graduates, the company went in to job centres and its own branches to tout for people who fancied seizing the chance to aim for a top job.

The upshot is that 10 recruits have been taken on – five internal candidates and five from outside – from around 400 applicants who came forward. Barclays is hoping to expand on the scheme if it is successful.

The course, for which the apprenctices will be based at the company’s HQ in Canary Wharf for six months of the year, is designed to develop the skills they need to look after the interests of business and private clients.

Jack Bates, aged 18, is one of the 10 recruits. He left school after taking his AS-levels and has had a succession of jobs, including working in a builder’s merchants and on his family farm.

“Growing up, I dreamt of a high-flying career – something my family could be really proud of – but after I left college I didn’t think that was going to be possible any more.”

Cerys Thomas, 25, has been plucked from working in the local branch in Merthyr Tydfil and now wants to be involved in investment banking.

There has been a lot of talk recently about MPs being more representative of the communities that they serve following former Foreign Secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind indicating that their £67,000 salary was too little to live on.

It would be nice if greater representation happened in the banking community, too.

Read more:http://www.independent.co.uk

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