Pictured: Apprentice of the year winner Thomas Croxford receiving his award from Sir Doug Ellis
Young people and businesses in Birmingham have celebrated the benefits of Apprenticeships at an awards ceremony which was held as part of National Apprenticeship Week 2014.
Winners were presented awards by Birmingham’s largest local provider of Apprenticeships South and City College at the Macdonald Burlington Hotel on 6 March.
The awards recognised excellence in two areas: businesses who grow their own talent through Apprenticeships and apprentices who have made a significant contribution to their workplaces.
Awards were given to apprentices from eight different industry sectors who were chosen for their attendance, time keeping, motivation, quality of work, attitude and work ethic. The winners were:
Business and IT Apprentice of the Year, sponsored by National Express West Midlands: Sandra Benaitiene
Construction Craft Apprentice of the Year – Painting and Decorating, sponsored by Keepmoat and City & Guilds: Massimba Matapo
Construction Technical Apprentice of the Year – Plumbing, sponsored by Edwards and City & Guilds: Simon Hutchins
Creative Studies Apprentice of the Year – Social Media, sponsored by Social Media Buz: Hayley Scriven
Health and Social Care and Early Years Apprentice of the Year – Teaching & Learning, sponsored by Morgan Hunt: Amy Jones
Retail and Commercial Apprentice of the Year – Hospitality and Catering, sponsored by Macdonald Burlington Hotel: Thomas Croxford
Retail and Commercial Apprentice of the Year – Retail, sponsored by PS Office: Kieran Ward
Motor Vehicle and Engineering Apprentice of the Year – Motor Vehicle, sponsored by OCN: Luke Hinson
In addition, the title of South and City College Apprentice of the Year 2014 went to Thomas Croxford for his commitment, hard work, enthusiasm and energy in helping others.
Tom said: “It feels fantastic to have had such a reward, recognising what I have put into the year I have worked for Glynn Purnell. He has given me many great opportunities and this is just another one. It came as quite a surprise on the night and I don’t think I’ll be forgetting it soon.”
The National Federation of Builders announced a £110,000 partnership with the college to help young people into the construction industry, also awarded an Excellence in Construction Award to Hannah Mealy, a young plasterer aged 16 who has shown huge amounts of potential.
Local businesses were recognised for the opportunities they provide to young people in the area. The winners were:
Apprentice Large Employer Award 2014: Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust
Apprentice SME Employer Award 2014: Unicorn Plastering Ltd
Alexandra Kustas, Skills and Apprentice Manager at Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust added: “We are very pleased to have been given this award. As an organisation that is all about providing services in and for the community, we are delighted to play a part in providing high quality learning and career opportunities for young people living locally.
“For us, apprentices are incredibly valuable to the business, and we go on to hire many as full-time members of staff once they complete their Apprenticeships.”
The college’s InBusiness network organised the event, and Honorary President, Sir Doug Ellis OBE presenting awards to members of InBusiness who have provided exceptional student experiences, contributed to student learning or offered Apprenticeships and work placement opportunities. The InBusiness award winners were:
Apprentice InBusiness Employer Award: Purnell’s Restaurant and Bistro
InBusiness Student Experience Employer Award: Vantage Toyota
InBusiness Student Contribution Award: Help Harry Help Others
InBusiness Student Ambassador Award: Matt Graham
Mike Hopkins, principal of the college said: “Congratulations to all our award winners who have shown excellence as apprentices and employers. I’d also like to thanks and applaud those who were nominated, and all our apprentices and employers.
“We think it is not only important to raise awareness of how beneficial Apprenticeships are to young people to help them get their foot on the career ladder, but also how they can really help local businesses secure their workforce for the future.”
On the night, guests had the opportunity to hear from young entrepreneur Jamie Dunn, who spoke about his experiences setting up his own business. Local Free Radio DJ Tom Ross also attended, as compare for the night.
National Apprenticeship Week is co-ordinated by the National Apprenticeship Service, and is designed to celebrate Apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals, businesses and the economy.
The college would like to thanks the generous sponsors of the event: City & Guilds, OCN, National Express, PS Office Supplies, Morgan Hunt, Keepmoat, BMS Security, National Federation of Builders and Social Media Buz.