Isle of Man Government invests in Island's future skills and education opportunities

01 October 2020

Additional training and educational opportunities are to be made available to Island residents, as part of the Economic Recovery Programme which was announced by Treasury Minister Alfred Cannan MHK in his July budget update.

The funding is available to provide new courses and to increase places on existing courses at UCM. This will provide a wide range of initiatives aimed at training and support for people on the Island.  To date, this has included subjects such as science and humanities, through new Access to Higher Education courses, GCSE and Functional skills in English and Maths and places on initial teacher training amongst a range of other subjects.

A flexible tailored programme of learning will begin with immediate effect and also includes an expansion in the range of apprenticeships and higher education programmes.

Minister for Enterprise, Laurence Skelly MHK commented:

‘The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the most significant challenge to our economy, our education and to our health and wellbeing for a generation. Yet it is how we respond to that challenge that is even more critical to ensure the Isle of Man continues to be an Island of enterprise and opportunity.

‘Through the Economic Recovery Programme, Isle of Man Government is committed to investing in our people by expanding the opportunities for developing core skills, providing paid training and delivering qualifications and skills that are in demand in our economy and that will help people find employment opportunities in the long term.

‘By creating these new and extended offerings, the overarching aim is to enable people to make progress in their careers and in their lives and to support the Isle of Man’s economic recovery and future sustainability.’

Jo Pretty, Principal of UCM added:

‘COVID-19 has impacted on numerous businesses and individuals on the Island. Education and training are key tools which can support the Isle of Man’s economic stability during these times, by helping to develop the appropriate skills required to support local businesses, which, at the same time, can transform people’s lives by assisting them to achieve their job aspirations.’

The funding so far has also supported some apprentices, who are now able to continue with their apprenticeship programmes.  We aim to have further widening participation activity in the community to support wellbeing and a new exciting internship programme through a ‘Learning Company’ model, details of which will be out soon.   

Julie Bradley, programme leader for the Economic Recovery Programme’s ‘Our People’ work stream explained:

‘This is very much looking at the bigger picture as it can offer appropriate skills required to help local businesses, which, at the same time, can transform people’s lives by assisting them to achieve their job aspirations. It can also be especially beneficial for those who have changes in circumstances arising from the pandemic.

‘We must all play a part in the Island’s economic recovery and, as certain services see a requirement for growth, there is a genuine need to engage with professionals from industry to find out which areas need additional support. Funding for the retraining of adults who find themselves requiring re-skilling or up-skilling and backing employers or enterprise is an essential part of that. I anticipate there being a genuine interest and uptake on what is being offered.’

For more information and a list of the opportunities on offer, please contact 648200 or visit