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UHMBT colleague appointed to national role supporting young people to gain skilled employment

23 February 2022

  • Quality and safety
  • Colleague health and wellbeing
  • Finance and transformation

Ray Olive 2.jpgThe dedication of a colleague from University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT) in supporting young people to gain skilled employment has been recognised nationally with an appointment to a national ‘Ambassador’ role.

Ray Olive, UHMBT’s Assistant Director of People and Organisational Development, will take up his new role as Chair of the T Level Ambassador Network immediately. The network - led by the Department for Education - will liaise with employers across England to develop and promote the T Level qualification.   

T Levels are a ‘level three’ programme and are equivalent to three A levels and they are unique in offering young people over 300 hours of industry experience. Successfully achieving a T Level can offer routes into skilled work, an apprenticeship or higher education.   

Ray’s experience of designing and developing T Levels has seen more than 60 young people so far gain industry-specific experience in a range of healthcare roles, from nursing to maintenance and engineering. UHMBT has further committed to offering up to 100 young people in each academic year the chance to work within the Trust to gain their industry experience.   

Ray said he is delighted with his new role: “What we know is that young people can bring a huge amount of innovative thinking, which is what businesses need to thrive. However, for many young people, finding their route into skilled work is hard. They don’t know where to start and which qualification would be best for them. T Levels offer that combination of practical industry experience, alongside academic development.

“Building upon the success of the network gives us the chance to make the case for T Levels and their benefits to businesses. As they are designed by employers, it means young people complete their qualification and are ‘industry-ready’. It offers many more young people - many of whom have faced barriers to getting a good job - a route to a brighter future.”  

Ray’s new role will run alongside his existing UHMBT responsibilities, within the Trust’s flexible working programme. The role will be for an initial period of 12 months. 

David Wilkinson, Director of People and Organisational Development, UHMBT, said: “Ray is a credit to Morecambe Bay and UHMBT for the passion he’s brought to introducing T Levels.

"He’s worked closely with local employers and further education colleges to design programmes that make young people a great fit for local employers. I’m delighted to see him take on this role nationally and look forward to seeing what the network can achieve to support the futures of young people across the country.” 

A Department for Education spokesperson said: “The T Level Ambassador Network plays an essential role in working with employers and individuals to help them understand the opportunities T Levels can bring to businesses and career success. 

“The Department would like to thank all the Network members for their commitment, and particularly the newly appointed Chair, Ray Olive, for stepping into the pivotal role of leading and growing this exceptional ambassador network.”