The success of the recently-launched Chartered Town Planner Degree Apprenticeship has been celebrated at the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Young Planners Conference, currently taking place in Newcastle.
Speaking at the annual event, RTPI President Ian Tant told delegates, whose number included some of the new apprentices, that an ‘astonishing’ 190 young planners had now taken up apprenticeships at RTPI-accredited planning schools around the country.
Image: RTPI President Ian Tant meets some of the new planning apprentices, including Meghan Gleeson (second from right)
Ian Tant said: “These apprenticeships are a vital pathway into the profession. All of the apprentices will receive a fully accredited RTPI degree, equipping them well for their planning careers and underwritten by their working experience.
“However, we can do even more to increase the visibility of the profession to the coming generations. We need more and more qualified and dedicated professional planners so we can meet the challenges of housing shortages, enhancing the built environment and climate action among others.
“I encourage all employers, both public and private, to create at least one new apprenticeship role next year. We particularly need more employers in the north of England. My message to you is you won’t regret it as you help to grow the skilled planners that are in such short supply.”
The new planning apprenticeships have been rolled out by eight universities in this first year – Birmingham, Brighton, UWE Bristol, Anglia Ruskin, Leeds Beckett, London South Bank, Plymouth and Sheffield Hallam.
One of the new apprentices attending today’s Young Planners’ Conference was Meghan Gleeson, an assistant planner at Turley and student at Leeds Beckett.
She said: “It’s been a real pleasure to attend the Young Planners Conference today. There’s been so much to learn on all aspects of planning so it’s a great introduction to the profession.
“The apprenticeship is definitely the best way to learn while on the job because it links the theoretical, academic aspect of the work with the day-to-day practicalities of being a planner.
“I’d like to thank the RTPI, Turley and Leeds Beckett for making it possible. They’ve all made me feel so welcome and I’m really looking forward to an exciting future in planning.”
There's more information on the RTPI’s Chartered Town Planner Degree Apprenticeship here