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Welcome to the Blue Cross apprenticeship portal, provided by The College of Animal Welfare.
Here you can find out more about the range of services offered to your practice.

Your Company Contact Information
Name: Gemma Squire
Telephone: 01234 567891
Email: training@bluecross.org.uk

Your contact at The College of Animal Welfare
Name: Laura Kemp
Telephone: 01480 422060
Email: lkemp@caw.ac.uk

Overview
Blue Cross have been helping sick, injured and homeless pets since 1897. A key part of this success is the staff involved within the promotion of welfare and providing treatments.

The College of Animal Welfare (CAW) train in excess of 20% of the UK’s veterinary nurses and support approximately 500 recognised training practices and are therefore well placed to understand the needs of the animal welfare and veterinary industry.

Process

Apprenticeship course fees are payable by the Blue Cross digital account service using the levy funds available. Therefore please contact Head Office if you are unsure of what funds are available for your branch before applying. Invoices for training are to be sent directly to Head Office and funds deducted accordingly.

Should a qualification require an additional employer contribution or fall outside of an apprenticeship fees will be payable by the individual practice CPD budget,

For an apprentice a training agreement is required which will be provided by CAW. This will need to be signed by the person undertaking the apprenticeship, the Practice Principal as well as a CAW representative.

 

What is available for you?

Apprenticeships

Did you know that as your practice is part of large organisation with a payroll bill of over £3million you are considered a levy paying company? This is great news because it means each month your employer is required to pay into a digital account and these funds can then be spent on apprenticeships for you and your team!

As all apprenticeship fees are paid by your employer, either solely from the digital account or partly from the digital account and partly as an additional financial contribution, you don’t need to pay anything yourself.

Apprenticeships are a great way in which a qualification can be studied whilst still working within practice. Here at The College of Animal Welfare we provide a number of apprenticeships that you can consider.

  • Veterinary Nursing

    Overview

    The Advanced Apprenticeship in Veterinary Nursing is run on a day release basis from Huntingdon, Potter Bar and Leeds centres with intakes in January, April and September each year. It is also available in a block release format from Huntingdon beginning in January.

    The VN apprenticeship includes the Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing and therefore throughout this course a variety of subject areas will be covered such as anatomy and physiology, diagnostic imaging, animal handling and fluid therapy.

    You will undertake a number of assessments including online examinations, assignments and case studies. You will also complete a Nursing Progress Log (NPL) as evidence of practical competence and a final practical examination (OSCEs).

    Entry

    To undertake the course you must have a minimum of five GCSEs at grade C or above (4-9) including English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject. You will also need to be working in a recognised Training Practice (TP). If your practice is not a TP please do get in touch to find out how your practice can become one.

    Fees

    As you work within a levy paying practice fees are made up of two parts as below and are payable by your employer.

    Digital account payment – £6,000

    College course fees:

    • Full fee: £5,514
    • Annual: £1,838 per year
    • Quarterly: £460 every three months
    • Monthly: £153 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • RCVS Registration: £185
    • City & Guilds Registration: £206
    • City & Guilds Exam Fee: £273.10
  • Nursing Assistants in a Veterinary Environment (VCA)

    Overview

    Throughout this apprenticeship the City & Guilds Level 2 Diploma for Veterinary Care Assistants will be studied. This qualification is expected to take approximately 15 months to complete and it is available to be started at any time as no college attendance is required.

    There are three units that will be studied:

    • Principles and Practices of Animal Handling and Care in the Veterinary Environment
    • Principles and Practices of Assisting with Veterinary Care in the Veterinary Environment
    • Principles and Practices of Administrative Duties in the Veterinary Care Environment

    Throughout these units a range of subjects will be covered such as basic anatomy, signs of normal and abnormal health, feeding requirements and appropriate client advice.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements for this course. Although you will need to be working within a veterinary environment, please note this does not need to be an RCVS approved Training Practice (TP).

    Fees

    As you work within a levy paying practice fees are made up of two parts as below and are payable by your employer.

    Digital account payment – £2,000

    College course fees:

    • Full fee: £1,761
    • Annual: £881 per year
    • Quarterly: £352 every three months
    • Monthly: £117 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • City & Guilds registration and certificate fees: £214.20
  • Leadership & Management

    Overview

    There are a range of leadership and management courses available. The two apprenticeship options to consider are:

    • Team Leader/Supervisor (Level Three)
    • Operations/Departmental Manager (Level Five)

    For both the courses above you will be assessed to ensure that you have the skills, knowledge and behaviours required. This will include covering content such as operational management, building relationships and personal effectiveness.

    Start dates for the apprenticeships are June and November. The Level 3 apprenticeship should be completed in 12 months and the Level 5 apprenticeship is expected to take approximately 30 months to complete.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic requirements however most individuals will usually have 5 GCSEs at grade C or above (4 – 9).

    Fees

    As you work within a levy paying practice fees are payable by your employer as below:

    • Team Leader Supervisor (Level Three) - £5,000
    • Operations/Departmental Manager (Level Five) - £9,000
  • Customer Service

    Overview

    There are two different levels of customer service apprenticeships available:

    • Customer Service Practitioner: Level 2
    • Advanced Apprenticeship in Customer Service

    Both these courses are work-based so no attendance at college is required. Instead you will be supported by an assessor who will regularly visit your place of work.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements. However, you will need to be living and working in England in a role that involves regular contact with clients, within a 90 minute radius of our Huntingdon, Potters Bar or Leeds centres.

    For the Advanced Apprenticeship you will need to be in a more supervisory/managerial type role e.g. reception team leader or practice manager.

    Fees

    As you work within a levy paying practice fees are made up of two parts as below and are payable by your employer.

    Customer Service Practitioner (Level 2)

    • Digital account payment - £4,000

    Advanced Apprenticeship in Customer Service (Level 3)

    • Digital account payment - £2,000
    • Full fee: £817
    • Annual: £408 per year
    • Quarterly: £102 every three months
    • Monthly: £34 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • City & Guilds registration and certificate fees: £146

    Application

    Apply below now.

  • Animal Care

    Overview

    There are two different levels of Animal Care apprenticeships available:

    • Intermediate Apprenticeship in Work-based Animal Care: Level 2
    • Advanced Apprenticeship in Work-based Animal Care: Level 3

    Both these courses are work-based so no attendance at college is required. Instead you will be supported by an assessor who will regularly visit your place of work.

    Throughout the course a variety of units will be studied including topics such as preparing accommodation, restraining animals and preparing feed for animals.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements. However, you will need to be living and working in England, within a 90 minute radius of our Huntingdon, Potters Bar or Leeds centres.

    For the Advanced Apprenticeship you will need to be in a supervisory or managerial type role.

    Fees

    As you work within a levy paying practice fees are made up of two parts as below and are payable by your employer.

    Intermediate Apprenticeship in Work-based Animal Care

    • Digital account payment - £2,000
    • Full fee: £1457
    • Annual: £728.30 per year
    • Quarterly: £243 every three months
    • Monthly: £81 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • City & Guilds registration and certificate fees: £168

    Advanced Apprenticeship in Work-based Animal Care

    • Digital account payment - £2,500
    • Full fee: £2488
    • Annual: £1244 per year
    • Quarterly: £311 every three months
    • Monthly: £104 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • City & Guilds registration and certificate fees: £180

    Application

    Apply below now.

Additional recognised qualifications

In addition to apprenticeships there are other recognised qualifications available for those within your practice to study:

  • VetSkill Level 2 Certificate for Veterinary Receptionist

    Overview

    This recognised qualification is designed specifically for receptionists within a veterinary environment. Throughout the course you will undertake five units and will cover content such as client communication, veterinary terminology, basic animal behaviour and supporting clients who are facing the death of an animal.

    It is expected the course will take between 6 – 12 months to complete. It is studied by distance learning and therefore the only college attendance required is to undertake the final exam.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements although a sound level of numeracy, literacy and ICT skills will be required. You will also need to be working or volunteering on reception in a veterinary practice for a minimum of 8 hours each week.

    Fees

    Course fees are payable by the individual student unless otherwise agreed by your practice as below:

    • Digital account payment - £2,500
    • Full fee: £1050
    • Pay As Your Learn: £88 per month

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • VetSkill Registration Fee: £125
    • VetSkill Exam Fee: £29
  • ILM Coaching & Mentoring

    Overview

    There are two ILM qualifications within this section that are ideal for clinical coaches and mentors.

    • ILM Level 3 Award in Coaching
    • ILM Level 5 Certificate in Coaching and Mentoring

    Both these recognised qualifications take between 6 – 9 months to complete. Your course will be studied via blended learning; a combination of online learning and attendance at college for two study days.

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements to undertake this programme. However, you should be working in a role where you are involved in coaching other members of staff.

    Fees

    Course fees are payable by the individual student unless otherwise agreed by your practice as below:

    ILM Level 3 Award in Coaching

    • Full Cour Fee: £473

    If you work within one of our TPs or supporting one of our students you can enrol on this course for £325.

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • ILM fees: £81

    ILM Level 5 Certificate in Coach and Mentoring

    • Full Cour Fee: £1,313
    • Pay As You Learn: £146 per month

    If you are working within one of our TPs or supporting one of our students you can enrol on this course for £975.

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • ILM fees: £132

    Application

    Apply below now.

  • Assisting Veterinary Surgeons in the Monitoring of Animal Patients Under Anaesthesia and Sedation

    Overview

    Ideally the monitoring of anaesthesia is best carried out by a qualified veterinary surgeon or veterinary nurse, however this is not always possible. It is therefore important that lay staff, who may be called upon to assist when needed, have the necessary knowledge and skills required.

    All anaesthetic monitoring must be carried out under the direct supervision of a veterinary surgeon in accordance with veterinary instructions and current Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) guidance

    Entry

    There are no formal academic entry requirements for this course although your Practice Principal must endorse your application. You must also have been within your role in practice for a minimum of six months prior to starting this qualification.

    Fees

    Course fees are payable by the individual student unless otherwise agreed by your practice as below:

    • Full Course Fee: £993
    • Pay As You Learn: £78
    • Full Course Fee: £1413 (Outside Engalnd and Scotland)
    • Pay As You Learn: £118 (Outside Engalnd and Scotland)

    There are also awarding body fees that are payable:

    • City & Guilds registration, examination and certification fees: £115.10

    Application

    Apply below now.

TP Approval Scheme

If your practice is not currently involved in veterinary nurse training but is looking to do so you will need to become a recognised Training Practice (TP). This will allow you to train your own staff or take on placements students.

Here at The College of Animal Welfare we support approximately 500 TPs and, as such, are well placed to understand your needs. Our service has been designed to:

  • Be cost effective
  • Make effective use of practice time
  • Minimise practice disruption
  • Be easy to understand
  • Have RCVS approval
  • Have access to quality support
  • Provide regular communication

To find out more about becoming a recognised training practice do get in touch using the contact details displayed.

Placement Students

It is clear that there is a shortage of veterinary nurses within the industry. However there is certainly not a shortage of individuals who want to become Registered Veterinary Nurses (RVNs). The bottleneck is the amount of placements that are available to support them.

Offering a placement can be a great way to add an enthusiastic person to your team. There are no course fees or wages to pay and you may even gain a fully qualified member of staff at the end!

We are always seeking new practices to be involved within our placement scheme for both our diploma and degree veterinary nursing students. Our Placement Liaison Team will happily talk you through the process and look at any available students in your area.

Get your free information pack

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

If you want to gain knowledge in a specific area we have a number of different courses and unique events you can attend:

  • TP Congress

    TP Congress

    This is a unique conference aimed at clinical coaches who would like to progress in the key role they have in developing student veterinary nurses.

    A wide range of topics are covered over the two day event which vary each year. Previous subjects have included practical NPL advice, how to support individuals with mental health challenges and motivational mapping.

  • Head Nurse Congress

    Head Nurse Congress

    Already a head nurse or practice manager? Or perhaps you are looking to become one in the future – then this congress is ideal for you.

    Held over two days the congress is packed full of tips designed to make your job easier! Topics vary each year but have included recruitment, well-being, managing difficult situations and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP).

  • CPD

    CPD

    A number of short courses are also available at each of our four centres throughout the year (Huntingdon, Potters Bar, Leeds and Edinburgh). Our courses are designed to provide you access to a multitude of learning opportunities that are delivered by professional speakers.

    Certificates of attendances will allow you to evidence your attendance in your professional development record where applicable.

    The range of topics varies with subjects being covered including how to deal with difficult cats, nursing the cancer patient, rabbit anaesthesia and handling reptiles.

What's Next?

If you need further support or have any questions please do get in touch and we will happy to help!