Thirty star learners, employers and learning providers involved in the delivery of successful skills programmes across Wales have been shortlisted from hundreds of applicants for this year’s Apprenticeship Awards Cymru.
Entries for the coveted awards, jointly organised by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), poured in from across the nation, giving a panel of judges a difficult task of selecting the finalists.
The finalists in 11 categories must now wait until the final ceremony at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport on October 20 to discover who has won the awards, which are sponsored by Pearson PLC and supported by media partner, Media Wales.
The awards are designed to showcase and celebrate the outstanding achievements of star learners, employers, tutors and assessors who have excelled in contributing to the development of the Welsh Government’s Traineeships and Apprenticeship programmes.
Skills and Science Minister, Julie James congratulated all the shortlisted entrants, praised the high standard of applicants this year and thanked them all for applying.
“Apprenticeships and vocational skills training are essential ingredients of economic success and vital tools in building a stronger, fairer and more equal Wales,” she said. “I welcome the fact that more employers are recognising the value of our successful apprenticeship programme and the need to raise higher level skills in order to address skills gaps and respond to industry changes.
“The Apprenticeship Awards Cymru provides a perfect platform to celebrate success and reward the hard work and dedication of learners, employers and training providers across Wales who have excelled on the Welsh Government’s Traineeship and Apprenticeship Programmes and contributed to the development of our wider employability and apprenticeship plans.”
NTfW chair Sarah John said:
“The Apprenticeship Awards Cymru are a fantastic annual showcase of our successful skills programmes here in Wales. We can be justly proud as a nation about the achievements of our learners, employers and work-based learning practitioners.”
The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.
The finalists are:
Traineeships Learner of the Year (Engagement):
- Billy Brown, Barry whose learning provider is The People Business Wales Ltd
- Catherine Grace Cox, Tregarth, Bangor from Grŵp Llandrillo Menai’s Llangefni campus
- Jordan William Jones, Bangor from Grŵp Llandrillo Menai’s Llangefni campus
Traineeships Learner of the Year (Level One):
- Emily Wintle, Llanharry, Pontyclun from ACT Training, Cardiff
- Joshua O’Leary, Tredegar from Peopleplus, Merthyr Tydfil
- Kirsty Redmond, Merthyr Tydfil from Peopleplus, Merthyr Tydfil
Foundation Apprentice of the Year:
- Joe Lewis, Port Talbot who works for Vale Europe Limited
- Samuel Jones, Graig, Pontypridd who works for Wales and West Utilities
- Sophie Hendy, Llandudno who works for Tommy’s Hair Company
Apprentice of the Year:
- Adam Griffiths, Ynysybwl, Pontypridd who works for Rhonda Cynon Taff County Borough Council
- Corey Jones, Wrexham who works for Aldi, Mold
- Stephen Pickles, Llanrumney, Cardiff who works for Renishaw PLC, Miskin
Higher Apprentice of the Year:
- Megan Hession, Llanishen, Cardiff who works for Montana Health Care, Caerphilly
- Peter Rushforth, Leeswood, Mold who works for Swans Farm Shop, Treuddyn, near Mold
- Rebecca Crook, St Athen who works for Little Inspirations Day Nursery, Barry
Small Employer of the Year (1 to 49 employees):
- Archway Court, Cardiff
- Happy Horse Retirement Home Ltd, Crai, Brecon
Medium Employer of the Year (50 to 249):
- Celtica Foods, Cross Hands, Llanelli
- Cyfle Building Skills Ltd, Ammanford and Electroimpact UK Ltd, Hawarden
Large Employer of the Year (250 to 4,999):
- Celtic Manor Resort, Newport
- Intellectual Property Office, Newport
- Redrow Homes, Tamworth
Macro Employer of the Year (5,000 plus):
- Deloitte LLP, Cardiff
- Tata Steel UK Limited, Port Talbot
Work-based Learning Assessor of the Year:
- Emma Huggins, Rhoose who works for ACT Training, Cardiff
- Kelly Nancarrow, Trevethin, Cwmbran who works for Torfaen Training
- Sue Jeffries, Rumney, Cardiff who works for Sgil Cymru
Work-based Learning Tutor of the Year:
- Matthew Owen from Aspiration Training Limited, St Mellons, Cardiff
- Ros Smith, Trehafod, Pontypridd who works for ACT Training, Cardiff