Infantry soldiers across the UK and those who settle in Scotland will be able to more easily match their military training qualifications to employers’ needs and study requirements in Scotland, thanks to a new resource launched by Veterans’ Minister Graeme Dey.
Until now British Army infantry qualifications have been mapped to the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) – the framework that is used in England and Northern Ireland. Now, for the first time, infantry qualifications have been matched to their comparable Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) level, used by learners, employers, colleges and universities in Scotland.
Mr Dey joined Aileen Ponton, the Chief Executive of the SCQF Partnership, and Colonel Sandy Fitzpatrick, Deputy Commander of 51 Brigade & Army Headquarters Scotland, to launch the new resource at Redford Barracks in Edinburgh.
During the visit Mr Dey got a taste for the quality and diversity of British Army infantry qualifications, meeting soldiers completing the Junior (Corporal) Command Leadership and Management and Arabic courses at the barracks.
Mr Dey said: “I have seen at first hand the range of valuable skills, experience and expertise that veterans bring to workplaces across Scotland. However, I am aware that the process of translating the skills and qualifications that are gained from service into the language of the employment marketplace outside the Armed Forces can sometimes be a struggle. This is why the Scottish Government has strongly supported this important work by the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) Partnership, aided by continued funding from the Scottish Funding Council. This work will not only help provide those leaving service with a smoother transition into civilian life, it will help employers – at all scales and across all sectors – access these skills and enhance their businesses.”
Colonel Sandy Fitzpatrick said: “The recognition of British Army infantry qualifications by the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework is an important step in helping our infantry service leavers and veterans demonstrate just how valuable they are to prospective employers across Scotland. We believe that the high quality of these qualifications along with the many other benefits that veterans offer employers, such as their ability to problem solve, work as a team and their self-discipline makes them twice the citizen and employee. This recognition will greatly improve soldiers’ transition from military to civilian life and better demonstrate the high-quality training and qualifications provided to the infantry of the British Army.”
Ms Ponton said: “The SCQF Partnership is delighted to be working with Scottish Government, Scottish Funding Council, the MoD and a wide range of partners to deliver greater recognition for the skills and qualifications held by services personnel. We see this work as helping employers and educational institutions understand the range of skills and expertise that those leaving the forces have to offer, and in addition support individuals to articulate their skills clearly in order to find employment or education which will add value to them and improve Scotland’s economic future.”
The mapping project was completed by the SCQF Partnership, with funding from the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) following a recommendation of the Scottish Veterans’ Commissioner’s report on Employability and Education.
The SCQFP has been working with the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to review its qualification matrices for all three of its Armed Services and has been examining all 1235 qualifications as well as speaking to key awarding bodies to ensure as many of the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force qualifications are either mapped or, where possible, officially recognised on the SCQF.