The graduate scheme has been established to respond to the high industry demand for REACH and CLP specialists and to assist young graduates to find employment as regulatory scientists and professionals in the field of chemical regulations.
Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the European Commission and responsible for Industry and Entrepreneurship, who announced the training scheme, together with Geert Dancet, said: "Amid times of crisis, the ECHA scheme is specifically developed to support a growing demand for specialists in the chemicals sector. We believe that this is the best way to support young professionals to build the experience and the knowledge they need to succeed in the job market."
To achieve its objectives, ECHA recruits chemists, toxicologists, ecotoxicologists, biocides and risk assessment experts as well as REACH and CLP regulatory affairs specialists. The new graduate scheme, which has been developed together with the European Commission, aims to improve the pool of suitable staff available for working at ECHA, as well as helping young graduates find employment as regulatory scientists and regulatory professionals in the field of chemicals.
An essential element of the graduate scheme is an information resource on ECHA’s website of academic courses that are relevant to working in this area of expertise. This information will enable graduates to plan their careers and source training and professional development possibilities as regulatory affairs professionals dealing with REACH and CLP. In addition, ECHA provides background material on the type of work that regulatory scientists at ECHA are engaged in and the qualifications and professional experience generally required to work in this field.
Furthermore, the existing ECHA traineeship scheme is being promoted to encourage uptake by graduates who wish to gain relevant experience with a view to a career in regulatory science. As a concrete, practical measure, the number of ECHA traineeship posts will be doubled with effect from 2012. Geert Dancet, Executive Director of the European Chemicals Agency said: "I am very pleased to be able to announce that the number of ECHA traineeship posts will be doubled from 2012 and we want to encourage graduates who wish to gain relevant experience and become trainees at ECHA to apply“.
The scheme was presented on 11 November 2011 at the ”Education and Skills for Business Competitiveness” conference in Rome organised by Confidustria, the Italian Industry Confederation and the European Commission.