This week, all state school A-level leavers in the Tower Hamlets borough can apply for a paid internship in the summer at the top City firms.
Successful candidates will get a chance to work at firms like JP Morgan, Lloyd’s of London and the Bank of England, and will receive the average wage for a graduate role.
The project, funded by the City of London Corporation, will allow students to gain experience in departments such as finance, HR and communications.
Stuart Fraser, Chairman corporation, said: “With the cost of higher education soaring, the City of London Business Traineeship programme has never been more important in equipping City-fringe students with the necessary skills to be a real asset to an employer.”
Applicants are initially assessed according to their GCSE grades and are selected through an interview and workshop process. Successful applicants will work for between six and 13 weeks, for between £17,000 and £21,000 pro rata, payable by the firm employing them.
Now in its 17th year, the traineeship scheme has attracted five more City businesses that will offer more trainee places. The scheme is open to all Year 13 students in the City-fringe boroughs such as Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Southwark, Lambeth, Camden, Islington and Westminster.
Vicky Mirfin, Lloyd’s manager of community affairs, said: “The Lloyd’s insurance market has been supporting the City of London Business Traineeship scheme for several years now. We recognise that getting hands on work experience can be career transformational and these kinds of opportunities are not so easy for City-fringe students to access. Some of our trainees have gone on to either permanent roles within the Lloyd’s market or have been invited back for additional placements.”
Business Secretary Vince Cable and Mayor Boris Johnson launched National Apprenticeship Week on Monday and they have called on more firms to create places to beat soaring youth unemployment. Ministers hope apprenticeships will eventually acquire the same prestige as degrees in the eyes of employers.