Written answers

Thursday, 13 July 2023

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Departmental Schemes

Photo of Rose Conway-WalshRose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
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360. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment to outline the internships, apprenticeships and graduate schemes run by his Department and public bodies under the aegis of his Department. [35483/23]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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My Department does not have responsibility for running internships, apprenticeships, and graduate schemes. However, the table below contains details on the internships, apprenticeships, and graduate schemes that my Department currently participates in. The agencies that come within my remit are statutorily independent in their functions and this is an operational matter for them. I have, therefore, referred the Deputy's question to the agencies for direct reply.

IGEES Internship Programme Since 2018 my Department has engaged with the Department of Public Expenditure, NDP Delivery and Reform to facilitate the placement of Undergraduate and Masters students through the Irish Government Economic and Evaluation Service (IGEES) Internship Programme. The internships run for 12 weeks through the summer period and provide interns with on-the-job training and development opportunities, focused on project work involving data analysis and research. Applications for the internship programme are via Universities. The internships provide an effective development pathway towards potential future employment as graduate Policy Analysts and Economists within the Civil Service. My Department has placed five interns in 2023 through this programme.

ICT Apprenticeship Programme Since 2020, my Department has engaged with the Department of Public Expenditure, NDP Delivery and Reform to facilitate the placement of ICT Apprentices. The ICT Apprenticeship Programmes are two-year, full-time programmes run in conjunction with FIT, the national coordinating provider for ICT Tech Apprenticeships, and City of Dublin Education and Training Board (CDETB). The programmes, covering three important areas (cyber security, network technician, software developer), will ensure that the Civil Service is able to attract and retain talented ICT staff and that all entry routes to ICT roles in the Civil Service are catered for, including retraining schemes and apprenticeships. The programme is intended as a recruitment pathway to established positions within Civil Service organisations. One ICT apprentice is currently on placement with my Department through the 2023 programme.

Public Appointments Service (PAS) Administrative Officer Graduate recruitment My Department recruits Administrative Officers (AOs) directly from the Public Appointment Service, which is the centralised provider of recruitment assessment and selection for the Civil Service. The AO is the main graduate recruitment grade for the Civil Service and provides successful candidates with the opportunity to progress to middle management. AOs have a crucial role in policy and strategy formulation across the spectrum of economic, financial, international, environmental, and social issues.

AO Graduate Programme All Administrative Officer graduates recruited to my Department are invited to participate in the AO Graduate Programme run by the Department of Public Expenditure, National Development Plan Delivery and Reform.

This Programme has been designed to support new recruits at Administrative Officer level, in meeting their potential and facilitating the development of collaboration and strong working relationships between staff from across the Civil Service. The Programme combines Civil Service Essential Knowledge modules, peer to peer learning, lunch and learn events and input from members of the Senior Public Service Skills all of which will assist new AO Graduates in developing the skills, understanding and network that they will need to perform at the highest level throughout their career in the Civil Service.

Willing, Able, Mentoring (WAM) Internship Programme My Department currently participates in the WAM Programme which is an initiative of *AHEAD. The Programme is a paid, mentored work experience programme offering graduates with intellectual and/or physical disabilities work placements. Graduates who successfully complete their placements are eligible to participate in a confined competition for permanency, which is run by PAS. Two graduates from last year’s programme who completed work placements in my Department were successful following their interviews for permanency and are now working in a full time capacity in the grade of EO in my Department.

There is currently one WAM graduate in my Department taken from the 2023 Programme. *AHEAD is an independent non-profit organisation working to create inclusive environments in education and employment for people with disabilities. The main focus of their work is further education and training, higher education, and graduate employment.

Oireachtas Work and Learn programme (OWL) My Department participates in the OWL (Oireachtas Work and Learn) programme, an applied learning, development and socialisation programme for young adults with an intellectual disability, run by the Houses of the Oireachtas. We have one permanent staff member who joined the Department through this scheme in 2022.


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