WE INVITED T-LEVEL STUDENTS AND THEIR PARENTS TO PLAY A GAME OF ‘THIS OR THAT’ AND HEAR THEIR THOUGHTS ON T-LEVELS
Listen to them discuss their T-level experiences and explain why they’d recommend the qualification to others
Amelia and Sarah
“One major benefit from this course is the work experience. Me and your dad were very happy with that, that you could start getting more confident working in different environments. You’re really thriving doing this T-level.”
Esther and Bodunrin
“I've seen a change in you, where you have just got this excitement about the course that you’re studying. You're speaking in public; your confidence has grown – I’ve seen how passionate you’ve become.”
Memphis and Debra
“Since T-levels have come along, it’s totally changed my idea of the skills that you can learn and where you can go. I feel the benefits of the future are wide open since you’ve taken on this course.”
Adjrienne and Juvina
“I’ve realised since starting your T-level you’ve become more mature. When you come home and you’re speaking about what you’ve been learning, it sounds like I am speaking nearly to a professional, you’re almost there."
Louie and Amanda
“I was a bit worried at first because it was a new course when you first started, but you’ve done really well. The company that you are working for now are amazing, I don’t think you’d be where are you today if you’d done anything different than the T-level.”
Ben and Paul
“I think it’s a bit of a game changer. What you’re going to gain from the T-level course moving forward is a win-win for you because you’ve got that experience and you’ve got the qualifications.”
Finley and Alison
“They’ve treated you as a part of the team since you started your placement. It’s been the best thing for you, your confidence has grown, and they really value you as a person. T-levels have done everything that they promised...”
Jim and James
“I think it has changed you quite a bit, your work ethic is up, getting up and going to college and your placement, not missing a day there and enjoying it”
Felicity and Owen
“It was the best thing for you. You’ve really blossomed and you’re doing fantastic. I think it is really good to actually get involved and stuck in doing what you’re doing, as well as the classroom-based education, and I think its opened up a really big door for you”
Lisa and Emma
"You haven't just got the theory, you've got the practical as well. It's more than work experience and I've noticed your confidence go up massively."
Nichola and Arwen
"You're just a lot happier, because you've got confidence knowing that you're on the right track, doing something that's worth while."
Jean-Claude and Kimmoy
“T-levels have placements, which is very beneficial for me because I’m very visual, so I like seeing things on-site.”
When we first discussed career aspirations with Ahana we were hesitant. We are familiar with more ‘traditional’ careers, like those in medicine or law, but after Ahana made it very clear she did not want to go down this path, we researched T-levels, discussed it and realised they could be great option that allowed her to pursue her dreams of a career in the construction industry; something she’s shown an interest in since playing with Lego as a child.
Since Ahana has started the classroom-based learning aspect of the course, she hasn’t looked back. She talks about her course every day and seems to really enjoy it. She loves what she is learning, and we are sure if she keeps up the hard work, she will achieve great things. For other similarly hesitant parents who are unsure about their children choosing T-levels, we would simply say, don’t be! I am sure other children will thrive and feel just as comfortable and confident as Ahana has found it so far. T-levels are a brilliant option.”
“When looking into courses with Toby it was important to him to get early access to employment opportunities so he could get an understanding of the career path he wanted to go down.
The hands-on experience that T-levels offer is second to none and has helped him build a better understanding of the industry as a whole, as well as learn more about areas like health and safety, and property conveyancing.
T-levels are an excellent industry-backed qualification; they’re hands-on from the beginning of the course and offer potential opportunities for early career progression as well as a route for those who decide to further their education.”
“T-levels have given me confidence in my son Adam’s future career; it’s a great balance of technical education and workplace experience. I think T-levels help to overcome uncertainty about job prospects as it provides experience through an industry placement at an early stage. I know Adam is thinking about prospective apprenticeship opportunities as a result.
I’m very supportive of Adam studying for his Digital Support T-level. The qualification is a great way to progress from a school environment to a more professional atmosphere, while still having the opportunity and benefits of classroom-based learning.”
“To be honest, at first, I was unsure about T-levels as I hadn’t heard of them before Adam mentioned them. However, after reading up on them and all the opportunities Adam would be given as part of his course, I felt it was the perfect qualification for him.
Since starting his T-level course Adam is enjoying every aspect of it. I can’t fault the teaching facilities or the equipment he’s been provided with by the college for his studies as well as his industry placement. He’s already been offered a further placement for next year, which will give him experience in different environments.
Like lots of parents I was worried about how Adam could get skills that employers are looking for, but I’ve no doubt that Adam’s now well prepared for work or further study.”
“Since Josh started his Digital Business Services T-level with Lloyds Banking Group, he has been very motivated; it’s the first time he’s been really driven for anything academic. The experience has been very positive for all of us and it’s great to see him doing something he’s really passionate about.
When Josh first mentioned T-levels, I had never heard of them, but I now understand that it’s the equivalent of a set of A-levels, which will provide him with the necessary qualifications to go into higher education or an apprenticeship.”
“When Milli first expressed her interest in T-levels, I was a little bit nervous about her choosing this route after GCSEs. But after hearing more details of the course, and how she could gain valuable hands-on experience from the 45-day placement, I quickly realised it was a unique opportunity for Milli to build new skills and confidence, with a direct route into her chosen career.
It’s been great to see Milli’s natural conscientiousness and good work ethic being put into action, allowing her to blossom in a working environment. I have been picking her up from work and proudly hear about how much she has enjoyed her day; all the while she’s getting recognition from both her college and the employer hosting her industry placement.
The practical side of the course has given Milli such a strong foundation of hands-on experience that you wouldn’t get with A-levels. She also gets the support from her tutors that traditional academic routes would offer. Overall, it’s been really good for her and I’m so pleased to see how happy she is with her choice.”
We asked T-level employers to share what happens on the 45-day industry placement and how students - and employers - are benefiting.
Hear what employers had to say and why they would recommend a T-level.
Helen Clements – Morgan Sindall Construction
"T-levels, it’s an absolute no brainer really. It’s the ideal way of finding your future employer. It puts them ahead of their peers in the classroom, when they’re interviewed by us, they know the jargon, they know what we do, they understand who we are, they want to work for us because they’ve enjoyed their placement with us."
Neil Mawson – Hydram
"Our T-levels students rotate through every section of the business, it gives them a very rounded exposure to the industry. T-level’s are a valuable qualification, it acts as a stepping stone between college and work."
Rose Rees – Midland Metro Alliance
"There’s been such an impact having the T-level students with us, their confidence has gone through the roof. They come into work and they’re part of the team, they work with colleagues and that’s enormous."
Ray Olive – University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust
"A T-level enables students to get into a workplace, into a career path that they really want to be in."
Peter Sadler – Bovis Homes
T-level students are geared up to start work and start their career. They will be the future leaders of the business.
Phil Eves – BAM Construction
"It’s a chance to get young people on-site to experience the world of work. The tasks we’ve given them, they are actually helping the guys on-site. They’re taking some of the load off their shoulders and that’s preparing them for the world of work."
Ian Roberts – University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust
"They are the future of our workforce and it’s so important to teach them that kind of passion we have in our job and see them develop in their role."
“T-levels offer an excellent blend of real-life industry experience with classroom-based learning. Gaining meaningful industry experience will significantly increase young people’s employability and act as a solid launch point for their careers.
As an employer looking to work with committed and driven people, I can see how T-levels assist in closing the skills gap and meeting demands of different businesses. T-level students come equipped with a good understanding of the industry, as well as the skills and professionalism required in a day-to-day role.
Sarina, our current T-level student, has jumped straight in with both feet. She has assisted our team with the completion of real-life activities and tasks, which has helped her get a good grounding in the reality of a role in our industry.”
“T-levels are an excellent introduction to our industry and give students a comprehensive insight into a potential future career.
We have hosted over 20 T-level students now and have had a really positive experience with a talent pool that is keen to learn and absorb new experiences.
T-levels not only help fill the skills gap, but also the gender gap in my industry as we have found they are equally attractive to both female and male students. They help to introduce young people into the industry who may otherwise have chosen a different career path and give students the opportunity to get a real taste of what a job in the industry entails.”
“T-Levels are a fantastic addition to our programme of activities around early career recruitment. This new qualification gives our university valuable exposure to young, talented individuals, who may be interested in our technical workforce.
These students offer a fresh perspective, innovative ideas, diverse skills, and provide the opportunity to make positive change to our workforce. We also offer exemplary pastoral support and focussed training packages, ensuring every young person receives the opportunity to explore the world of work in a supportive environment. On completion of their industry placement students will have developed transferable skills that make a positive contribution to their future career.
Parents should be reassured that their child will gain vital skills focussing on their chosen specialism as well as other sectors. Each placement will provide a tailored learning journey, from onboarding through to embedding skills, certificated training, and networking.”
“When recruiting for new team members at Lloyds Banking Group, we look for core skills for the role, as well as communication skills, a can-do attitude and the ability to work as part of a team.
Through our recent work with T-level students we were really able to help shape these vital skills and see the fantastic progress that was made in a short time.
For employers and teenagers T-levels are a move in the right direction: based on our experience the qualification really does help better prepare young people for the working world. We’re excited to welcome the next intake of students on their industry placements.”
“The industry placement aspect of T-levels gives students the opportunity to apply their classroom knowledge to a real project. That kind of experience is invaluable to me as a business owner and a student who’s been in a studio and completed a project from start to finish will always have the edge over other applicants.
T-levels create a skills-ready pool of young people who have the right attitude, and the competencies and behaviours businesses need. It’s a route I would have picked myself if it was available when I was younger.
It’s also down to us as a business to inspire people to consider these types of roles. For INFINITY 27, working with T-level students has gone so well we’ve set up PROTOGÉ, a work-based training company for young people with the mission to inspire and improve individuals; to ultimately drive innovation into our industry.”
“T-levels struck a chord with me personally as I’m passionate about giving opportunities to young people, and giving them the access to careers within the NHS and healthcare.
T-levels are innovative and offer young people valuable experience and rich learning opportunities while ‘on the job’ through the industry placement. It’s definitely a route I would have taken myself if this qualification had been available when I was 16!
I believe T-levels are a really positive step for our local community, particularly for those young people who might think Healthcare is an inaccessible route for them. The qualification provides the opportunity to take a first step into this sector and I find it heart-warming to be involved.”
“As an organisation, Siemens is committed to supporting T-level industry placements. We have hosted pilot placements in order to provide constructive feedback to the Department for Education that helps form policy and look forward to widening our future opportunities. One reason that we host placements is because it’s in our culture to play our part in the development of our local communities.
Offering T-level industry placements is a great way for us to help turn today’s talented young people into the experts Siemens needs for tomorrow. One aspect in particular that we believe the T-level students benefit from during their time with us, is a much better sense of their individual strengths or areas for growth when it comes to desirable behaviours in the workplace. We believe that a positive experience with Siemens opens up further opportunities for T-level students, including our own apprenticeship programmes.”
“This month, we have seen our first cohort of T-level students join us on their industry placements. The qualification aligns well with our vision of leaving a legacy of sustainable employment opportunities for local people. Our drive is to encourage young people to consider careers in the rail, civil engineering and construction sectors and we strongly believe T-levels can go a long way in supporting this.
T-levels are not only beneficial to us as employers but are also great for the student who gains skills and knowledge through a mix of theory and hands on practical learning. The courses provide a unique interaction with the real world of work, as well as giving students a platform to bring a fresh perspective to our projects. We see students as our future talent bank, bringing innovative ideas and great technological skills, all whilst having a determination to make the world a better place to live in. As a mum myself, I truly see T-levels as being a game-changer in career opportunities for young people.”
“T-levels are a great opportunity for both employers and young people. They will help our business hire enthusiastic and committed students who have a relevant qualification, that includes the knowledge and skills we need.
T-levels are a great opportunity for young people to learn about our sector in a live environment. Through the industry placement students become part of the team and get opportunities to use their classroom skills and knowledge and develop a deeper understanding of concepts they’ve studied, while also broadening their networks, aspirations and confidence.
The unique combination of classroom and workplace, skills and knowledge result in an impressive end product: the young person is well prepared and qualified, with a network of support to step into the world of work.”
“As a construction company, we are always searching for candidates who are committed to a role in construction. We see T-levels as being the missing ‘jigsaw’ piece in finding the right talent as they have the support of the employer at the centre of everything.
Providing a student with an industry placement during the course enables both the young person and employer to see where the student can fit within the organisation. This helps to establish their knowledge and skill set to meet the needs of the employer and put them in good stead to further progress their career.
As a parent myself, I have great confidence in the progression opportunities for young people through T-levels. I’m excited to see the number of schools, colleges and UTC’s offering T-levels increasing, so a greater number of students and employees can reap the benefits.”
“Having been a T-level advocate from the start, I have built on my involvement even more, from chairing the panel for the Engineering and Manufacturing, Maintenance Installation and Repair route, to now exploring other T-level routes including Health. I strongly believe T-levels can take young people places.
My confidence in the qualification has meant that I have committed to offering 100 industry placements for T-level students. Having the combination of classroom-based learning and hands on skills training offers valuable experience which I believe will address many issues employers are facing like the current skills shortage.
By helping to tackle the employment issues we have faced, T-levels are bringing us not only local talent, but a real diverse pool of broad knowledge which is key for a successful workforce.
For me, T-levels provide a worthy alternative to other qualifications such as A-levels and apprenticeships; mixing academic and technical knowledge and skills to produce a candidate that has a winning combination for their chosen career.”