App.Mod.E - An Apprenticeship Model for developing Entrepreneurial skills

Michele Canarino
Tuesday, 26 March 2019 10:53
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App.Mod.E is a project conceived by a consortium of European agencies and companies. It offers support to upper secondary and higher VET students in transition from schools to employment. The overall aim of the project is to help students to acquire entrepreneurial mind-set and skills during their apprenticeship in a company.

The main objective of the App.Mod.E. Project is to give entrepreneurial skills to students who are doing their apprenticeships. The entrepreneurial mind-set is not a personal skills, but it can be developed through learning and experience. Normally, apprenticeship periods in enterprises focus on specific vocational skills and employment skills. The trainers in VET schools do not have the knowledge to teach entrepreneurial skills to students, neither the trainers in companies have them. The App.Mod.E provides methodological support and practical tools to trainers, in order to include entrepreneurial skills in the learning design of apprenticeships.

The project will provide three intellectual outputs to trainers, companies and students, in order to help them in the development of entrepreneurial skills:

  • An apprenticeship model for acquiring and developing entrepreneurial mind-set and competences. The model focus on the six main competence areas of entrepreneurship: the ability to recognise opportunities; the ability to organize firm’s resources; the ability to develop strategies; the ability to interact with partners and establish trusted relationships; the ability to take the initiative; the develop of analytical thinking, decision-making, problem-solving and risk management capabilities. A trainers’ guide to support the application of the apprenticeship model. The guide’s aim to help trainers from companies and VET schools to develop a proper apprenticeship for students involved.
  • A “VET-Company partnerships for apprenticeships” Guide, reinforced by a quality assurance framework and a Memorandum of Understanding. One of the objectives of the project is to create a network of VET schools and companies. The guide will focus on partnerships between companies and VET schools for the successful development of the apprenticeship model for entrepreneurship. It will give practical advices and will encourage local companies and VET schools to join the partnership and implement successful apprenticeship models.

One of the objectives of the project is to apply gamification elements to the apprenticeship. For this reason, the apprenticeship model is based on problem-solving and active training. The apprentice will face companies’ real problems and challenges and will have to find a solution to respond. During the process, the apprentice will need to develop a strategy, find resources needed, make decisions, solve problems, assure the collaboration of supervisors and colleagues and deliver results of certain quality. The whole process will use gamification elements like constrains in time, achievement badges and incentives. The gamification elements will be provide engagement and motivation to the apprentice in order to complete his/her mission successfully.

The App.Mod.E project is expected to generate valuable results for VET schools, companies and students. VET schools will acquire a methodology and practical tools to develop, organize, support and evaluate apprenticeship periods in companies, focusing on the acquisition of entrepreneurial skills. VET schools will be able to easily find relevant apprenticeship positions for their students. Companies will acquire methodology and practical tools too, plus the resulting advantages of the local impact of the apprenticeships. Plus, trainers from VET schools and companies will acquire the capacity building to organize entrepreneurial learning and support the acquisition of related skills and competences by the students that participate in apprenticeships. The final beneficiaries, VET students, will acquire a business mind-set and valuable entrepreneurial competences, at the same time they acquire specific vocational skills in their apprenticeships. Lastly, there will be an increased awareness of the importance of apprenticeships for VET students in general and for the building of entrepreneurial skills.

The App.Mod.E project is the result of the joint work of six European partners, each of them specialist in a different field. The consortium is composed of:

  • Sud Concept, a cooperative located in Corsica, France. The cooperative has expertise of the economic context of the region and promotes the development of employment and workers and young people qualification.
  • IDEC, a training consulting company located in Piraeus, Greece. IDEC has been active the last 20 years in the field of EU projects. It has long experience in European policies regarding work based learning and apprenticeship schemes.
  • Eurocrea Merchant, a management consulting firm located in Milan, Italy. The company provides studies and researches on entrepreneurship education and innovation in training methodologies.
  • Ruse Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the first chamber of commerce established in Bulgaria. The no-profit organization provide services for companies to help develop their business and has an extensive experience in project management and implementation of EU projects.
  • Arges County Business Association, an NGO based in Romania. It promotes entrepreneurship and innovation and support self-employment and start-ups. The organization offer trainings and internships to students and also offer counselling to help them start their own business.
  • Politeknika Ikastegia Txorierri, a higher education VET school based in Basque Region of Spain. The school provide high quality technical and adult training in fields like electronica, mechanical manufacturing, commerce and marketing and environmental education.
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