A unique careers and apprenticeship service for young people in Greater Manchester is now providing them with useful tools and options to help them plan for their future.

GMACS – which is short for the Greater Manchester Apprenticeship and Careers Service – has launched and to mark the occasion an event took place in Salford, where the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, met with secondary and post-16 education leaders while driving forward his Life Readiness agenda.

From Year 7 through to becoming an adult, young people across Greater Manchester will have access to a range of useful tools to help them build their skills, search and apply for opportunities with businesses and apprenticeships, as well as for college and post-16 courses. GMACS also promises to offer young people the chance to get a flavour of what’s on offer in the world of work and view available jobs.

All secondary schools and colleges in Greater Manchester are being encouraged to sign up to GMACS to allow their students to benefit from the new site, where everything – from details of apprenticeships, careers advice and plans, and even a personality quiz to help young people decide a career – can be easily accessed in one place.

Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership co-chair, Mo Isap, who hosted the GMACS launch with Andy said: “GMACS is not only a ground-breaking idea, this is a game changing system.

“The conception and launch of GMACS has only been possible with great vision from our Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, supported by both the GMCA and Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership, combined with a foundation laid over many years by the tremendous work done by BridgeGM and the Careers and Enterprise Company.

“The GMACS launch event showcased the most connected and collaborative networks of education and employers anywhere in the country.

“It’s due to this that we can be confident that GMACS will deliver on the ambition of ensuring every single young person from year seven onwards growing up in Greater Manchester has visibility of, and access to, all of the fantastic careers choices, work experiences and high quality apprenticeships and technical courses our city-region has to offer.”

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, said: “It’s absolutely fantastic news for young people across our city-region that GMACS is now available for them to access – creating a single, digital platform to help them make appropriate and informed decisions about their futures and careers.

“GMACS is an ambitious and unique apprenticeship and careers service that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the country. The portal provides a trusted source of information that allows young people to plan, search and apply for their future opportunities – whether that be college places, apprenticeships or other developmental activities to build their skills – all in one place.”

The Mayor was joined at the launch event by more than 300 careers leaders, educators and employers, while speakers included Joanne Roney OBE, Chief Executive of Manchester City Council and Lead Chief Executive for Education, Skills, Work and Apprenticeships.

Councillor Sean Fielding, Leader of Oldham Council and GMCA lead for Education, Skills, Work and  said: “GMACS will help young people across Greater Manchester and help to improve the quality and growth of apprenticeships while introducing them to the world of work. Apprenticeships are an excellent route for anyone looking to start, change or develop their careers.”

For more information, visit www.gmacs.co.uk