13th Dec, 2017

City firm is first to try out new graduate grant idea

A WORCESTER cyber security firm has become the first business in the city to take advantage of the opportunities offered by a new graduate grant scheme.

Titania, an award-winning company based in Barbourne, has created its first industry placement for university students with help from the £1,000 grant.

Vaughan Esprey, Chief Technical Officer at Titania, said: “We are a committed apprenticeship employer, but this is the first time that we’ve taken a university student on a placement.

“Bringing young people and students into our business helps us to develop our talent pipeline – and supporting the next generation is also at the heart of our corporate values.”

The firm has recruited Glen Stimson, a second year computer science student, through the University of Worcester’s Business School Placement Office.

Glen, aged 35, is retraining after spending five years in the British Army and ten years working as an electrician. He hopes that his placement year will give him a competitive edge in the workplace after he graduates.

“Titania has offered me the opportunity to get experience in the area I’m interested in working in, when I finish my studies,” Glen said.

“I can apply what I’ve learnt at University to my work for them – and this placement will be invaluable for my final year studies.”

The new Worcester City Council Graduate Grant Scheme has been launched to combat the higher level skills shortage which can often hamper business growth.

The scheme, which is being run in partnership with the University of Worcester and Graduate Advantage, will enable city businesses to access free recruitment and grants of between £250 to £1,000 towards salary costs for either a placement student or a recent graduate.

Coun Geoff Williams, Vice Chair of the Council’s Place and Economic Development Committee, said: “Attracting and retaining people with higher level skills to support the growth of local businesses is a real priority for the City Council.

“Our new graduate grant scheme is designed to open the door to some of the fantastic careers on offer in Worcester businesses – as well helping local firms to access knowledgeable, skilled staff.”

Kat Jones, Placement Manger at the University of Worcester Business School, added: “Our students and graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills to contribute to business from day one.

“We know that students who do their placement year with a local business are more likely to stay in the area and are much more employable, having already experienced the rigours of a busy working environment.”

For more information on eligibility and how to apply for the Worcester City Graduate Grant Scheme, e-mail economy@worcester.gov.uk or call the Economic Development team on 01905 722181.

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