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The Corporation

Posted: 03/06/13

House of Lords celebration for star apprentices

Top-performing apprentices from across the country are set to be honoured at a prestigious House of Lords reception.

West Nottinghamshire College Group is staging a ‘Celebration of Apprenticeships’ event in the historic building’s Cholmondeley Room and Terrace on Wednesday (5 June) to showcase the success of its apprenticeship scheme and recognise the hard work and commitment of apprentices and their employers.

Now in its second year, the ceremony will see 30 outstanding apprentices receive awards and formally congratulated in front of their families and employers.  They were selected by the college from its crop of 12,000 apprentices in recognition of their talent, dedication and contribution to their workplace.

The apprentices include those from the college and its subsidiary companies Vision Apprentices, an apprentice recruitment and training agency, and Vision Workforce Skills, a national training provider to employers.

The event – which coincides with this year’s VQ Day, a national celebration of those who gain vocational qualifications – is being hosted by Baroness Prashar CBE, a cross-bench peer who has led several public and voluntary organisations.

Guest speaker is Skills Minister, Matthew Hancock MP.

Awards will be presented by David Way, executive director of the National Apprenticeship Service, and Andrew Jones MP, Apprenticeships Ambassador in Parliament.

Other guests include MPs, senior figures from the further education and skills sector, representatives of partner organisations, and family members of the apprentices along with their employers.

Asha Khemka OBE, principal and chief executive of West Nottinghamshire College Group, said: “In these challenging economic times, rising youth unemployment is having a major impact on the aspirations of young people and their job prospects. While there is no quick fix, our apprenticeship programme is making a real impact in transforming lives and providing a workforce for the future.

“Through engagement with employers and young people, we have developed one of the most successful apprenticeship schemes in the country.

"The House of Lords is a fitting venue to commend the individual achievements of apprentices but also celebrate our partnerships with employers in providing the skills and talent to make their businesses thrive.”

West Nottinghamshire College Group is one of the largest providers of employer-related training in the country.  Around half of its 12,000 apprentices are recruited directly by their employer and attend the college on day-release as part of their learning, while Vision Apprentices has found jobs for more than 2,000 young people through an apprenticeship since its launch in 2010.

Earlier this year, the college group assumed responsibility for an additional 4,000 apprentices when it took over most of the vocational training carried out by the former Pearson in Practice, following parent company Pearson Plc’s decision to exit the business.

It saw the college launch Vision Workforce Skills, which delivers industry-specific apprenticeships and work-based programmes to employers across the country, primarily in professional and business services, IT, and creative and digital media.

Apprentices receiving awards are (name of employer in brackets):

  • Amy Shaw, of Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Notts (West Nottinghamshire College, Mansfield, Notts)
  • Harry Jewsbury, of Mansfield Woodhouse, Notts (West Nottinghamshire College, Mansfield, Notts)
  • Olivia Harbor, of Mansfield, Notts (Vision Apprentices, Mansfield, Notts)
  • Lauren Miles, of Mansfield, Notts (Vision Apprentices, Mansfield, Notts)
  • George Taylor, of Retford, Notts (Bassetlaw District Council, Worksop, Notts)
  • Danny Flint, of Brinsley, Notts (Gedling Borough Council, Arnold, Notts)
  • Katie Carrington, of Langwith, Mansfield, Notts (Mansfield District Council, Notts
  • Ashley Mackness, of Southwell, Notts (LAC Conveyors Ltd, Bulwell, Nottingham)
  • Keane Haslam, of Mansfield, Notts (DG Electrical Service, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts)
  • Lloyd Kemp, of Mansfield, Notts (Wilkinson Electrical Services, Huthwaite, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts)
  • Louise Wheatcroft, of Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts (Charles York Limited, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Notts)
  • Mathew Payne, of Giltbrook, Notts (Race Technology Ltd, Eastwood, Nottingham
  • Ryan Patton, of Newark, Notts (NSK Bearings Europe Ltd, Newark, Notts)
  • Thomas Hind, of Balderton, Newark, Notts (NSK Bearings Europe Ltd, Newark, Notts)
  • Sarah Schofield, of Skegby, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts (Jephsons Shopfitters Ltd, Mansfield, Notts)
  • Emilia Sobel-Golowanski, of Mansfield, Notts (formerly of Leicester Housing Association Ltd, Leicester)
  • Maddison Smith, of Northfield, Birmingham (Computer Driven Solutions, Birmingham)
  • Kamil Zelazko, of Knowle, Bristol (Ricoh UK Ltd, Wellingborough, Northamptonshire)
  • Daniel Wareing, of Fearnhead, Warrington (Konica Minolta, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire)
  • Jake Williams, of Dudley, West Midlands (AltoDigital, Kingswinford, West Midlands)
  • Youwan Thapa, of Basingstoke (Effective Telecoms Ltd, Basingstoke)
  • Brandon Read, of Winklebury, Basingstoke (New Voice Media, Basingstoke)
  • Francesca Foster, of London (Deagostini UK, London)
  • Daniel Elliott, of Maidstone, Kent (YMCA, Maidstone, Kent)
  • Gustav Cloete, of Bracknall, Berkshire (Savvis UK Ltd, Wokingham, West Berkshire)
  • Joshua Blades, of Banbury, Oxon (Banbury I.T. Wizard, Banbury, Oxfordshire)
  • Cameron Tonkin, of Whitchurch, Avon (St Bernadette Catholic Secondary School, Whitchurch, Bristol)
  • Lemar Stokes, of Boxwich, Walsall (Xerox Limited, Uxbridge, Middlesex)
  • Jack Chance, of Coventry (DC Builders and Sons Ltd, Coventry)
  • Kirsten Ball, of Gloucester (Expectations! Recruitment Services Ltd, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire)