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Warrington & Vale Royal College celebrates remarkable apprentices and employers during National Apprenticeship Week 2024

For National Apprenticeships Week, Warrington & Vale Royal College celebrated by hosting an array of exciting events for current and future students keen to learn about this alternative form of education. This annual campaign aims to bring together businesses and apprentices nationwide in recognition of outstanding work and the incredible impact of apprenticeships to both individuals and on the employment sector as a whole.

As one of Warrington’s most established providers of apprenticeships, there was much to revel in at Warrington & Vale Royal College, who have always championed the mantra of “careers not courses.” With over 700 apprentices currently pursuing their qualification at the college, and hundreds more applicants ready to join in September 2024, the college was delighted to recognise the impressive achievements of these dedicated young professionals while reminding those who may be considering furthering their education just how lucrative and prestigious apprenticeships can be.

During the week, the college showcased stories from current and former apprentices whose careers are taking off. One such student is Alex Grant, now working as a Level 3 Motor Vehicle & Maintenance Apprentice for David Paul of Warrington, who attained this highly sought-after position whilst completing her industry placement on the college’s full time Level 1 Motor Vehicle course. Former Great Sankey High School pupil Alex says: “I really believe apprenticeships can be for everyone – it’s definitely what suits me best! I was a bit daunted about going into what people think is a male-dominated sector at first, especially as an apprentice, but I have fit in straight away and think that it is something that more young people should consider after high school.”

Alex Grant in her workplace
Alex Grant with her employers at David Paul of Warrington.

Amidst the social media shout-outs, visits from top industry employers and a range of activities to support prospective apprentices find apprenticeship roles, the college hosted yet another record-breaking Open Evening for adults and school leavers. During this event, the college’s state-of-the-art facilities and its full range of technical qualifications (BTEC), T Levels, HE and apprenticeships courses were on display, and visitors were invited to attend an illuminating talk from the college’s dedicated Apprenticeships Team, which aimed to demystify the world of apprenticeships for both applicants and parents.

Those paying close attention to the college’s social media platforms may have caught the launch of a brand-new podcast aimed at school leavers and created by the college’s friendly School Engagement Team. To commemorate National Apprenticeships Week, the debut episode of “The College Group Chat” had a strong focus on responding to commonly asked questions about these alternative qualifications, and it is hoped that future episodes of the podcast will be an engaging way to deliver invaluable information about post-16 options and college life.

“Celebration Friday” marked the pinnacle of National Apprenticeships Week, where remarkable apprentices were presented with awards, honouring them for their hard work and dedication to their careers. Notable awardees include:

• Rising Star 2023-2024: Phoebe Hodgkinson, Level 2 Hairdressing Apprentice at Hair Couture

• Rising Star 2023-2024: Rebecca Hitchmough, Level 3 Business Administration Apprentice at Warrington & Vale Royal College

• Rising Star 2023-2024: Ronald Gnanathas, Level 2 Finance Assistant Apprentice at Stocalfe Response

• Rising Star 2023-2024: Jack Pritchard, Level 2 Carpentry & Joinery Apprentice at Hulse Renovations

• Rising Star 2023 - 2024: Emily Flannery, Level 3 Business Administrator Apprentice at Bridgewater NHS Trust

• Most Improved Apprentice: Shaun Bradley, Level 3 Apprentice at Residential Management Group (RMG)

• Apprentice of the Year 2023-2024: Jessica Hughes, Level 3 Team Leader Apprentice at Residential Management Group (RMG)

• Apprentice of the Year 2023-2024: Frederick Blackman, Level 2 Carpentry & Joinery Apprentice at Ecospheric.

Recognising the transformative impact that apprenticeships can have on both individuals and organisations alike, the college also showed its appreciation to its partnered apprenticeship providers for their continued support of upcoming professionals. This year's employer awards honoured two companies and one outstanding individual for their remarkable dedication to supporting apprentices' development. R Hough & Co earned the prestigious "Large Enterprise of the Year" accolade, while MCC Digital secured the "Small Medium Enterprise of the Year" award, after proudly hiring their first Business Administration Apprentice this academic year. Louise Blackham, Engagement & Social Value Manager at Residential Management Group, was celebrated as this year's Apprentice Champion and was given particular thanks for the enthusiasm she has shown in her role towards the numerous apprentices kickstarting their careers with their company.

To find out more about the range of apprenticeships on offer at Warrington & Vale Royal College, please click the button below.

Discover our apprenticeships courses by clicking here.