Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, has opened a new National Express Training Academy in partnership with South and City College Birmingham.
The National Express Training Academy includes a number of new classrooms, along with a new MOT pit lane and brake roller tester to provide students with hands-on experience of working with vehicles. A National Express West Midlands bus and a number of other parts have also been donated for use as part of the various training programmes available.
Hundreds of thousands of pounds have been invested in the new academy to help tackle youth unemployment in the region. National Express is also working with the college to deliver pre-employment and pre-apprenticeship training for those interested in job roles including driving, ancillary, mechanical support and customer services. Every student that successfully completes and passes their training is guaranteed an interview for a role with National Express.
Tom Stables, Managing Director, National Express UK, said: “We are really proud to launch the new National Express Training Academy in partnership with South and City College Birmingham.
“As one of the region’s largest private sector employers it’s vital that we work together with the college to provide young people in the communities we serve with local education, training and skills opportunities and help them get ready for future employment.”
South and City College Birmingham is also supporting the operator with the development of its people by delivering a range of courses for existing staff, including leadership and management training, welding and wheel fitment. National Express already has 40 managers and supervisors from across the UK on training programmes at the college.
The launch of the academy ties in with the government’s Year of Engineering campaign, which aims to tackle the UK’s engineering skills gap. It is hoped that pre-apprenticeship opportunities available at the new training academy will encourage more young people to consider a career in engineering.