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University secures funding to further improve graduate employment prospects in West Yorkshire

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Leeds Trinity University has been successful in a bid to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) to receive funding to deliver a new programme, which supports West Yorkshire graduates with employment prospects.

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The University plans to launch the ‘Skills Connect’ programme early this year, initially over a two-year period to support over 1,000 graduates across the region. The programme aims to improve the prospects for all recent graduates in West Yorkshire, especially those from under-represented groups, including graduates from Black and minority ethnic communities. It will offer a flexible model to support the individual needs of each graduate and connect them to high-level employment opportunities.

Through the WYCA funding, the University will deliver a series of workshops, industry-related content, and employer networking events in partnership with 11 other higher education providers through Go Higher West Yorkshire. The programme will also include enterprise-focused activities for graduates interested in starting their own businesses.

The new programme will build on Leeds Trinity’s established focus on employability for its students, with compulsory work placements built into all undergraduate degrees.

Claire Newhouse, Director of the Centre for Apprenticeships, Work-based Learning and Skills at Leeds Trinity University, said: “Graduate success is at the heart of everything that we do at Leeds Trinity University and we’re extremely excited to be leading this project, linking graduate talent to the needs of the West Yorkshire economy. We’re looking forward to continuing our work with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to provide local graduates with the skills, confidence and industry contacts to make the next steps in their career.”

Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, said: “A Skills Connect free training course is just what you need to gain new skills suitable for many industries and feel confident and prepared to apply for exciting new job roles, progress in your career or start your career journey after leaving education.”

Funding was secured for the graduate programme as part of WYCA’s Adult Skills Training Framework, which focuses on gaining and retaining meaningful employment, while equipping adult learners with advanced skills to work in the key sectors outlined in the Leeds City Region Employment and Skills Plan.