Apprenticeships celebrated at WCG graduation ceremony
Apprentices, employers, family and friends celebrated National Apprenticeship Week 2017 at Warwickshire College Group’s Apprenticeship Graduation and Celebration of Awards ceremony at The Old Shire Hall, Warwick.
The apprentices were celebrating completing a wide range of apprenticeships, from engineering and social media to horticulture and welding, within businesses large and small, local and national.
The ceremony began with a drinks reception at the Grade One listed venue The Old Shire Hall before guest of honour, Chris White MP, gave a keynote speech. The apprentices then took to the stage to receive their official scrolls from WCG Group Principal and CEO, Angela Joyce.
Awards were also made to Outstanding Apprentices in three industry sectors.
- Colin Hankinson, apprentice in engineering maintenance for DHL Supply Chain, won the award for Outstanding Apprentice in Engineering and Construction
- Adam Barnes, apprentice in production horticulture at Cotswold Garden Flowers, won the award for Outstanding Apprentice in Land-based Industries
- Ella Jackson, apprentice in business administration at Robert Welch, won the award for Outstanding Apprentice in Service Industries.
Angela Joyce, Group Principal and CEO of WCG said: “This ceremony is an opportunity for us to recognise and reward apprentices in the same way as those who have studied for a degree, so it was wonderful to see family, friends and employers coming together to celebrate the apprentices’ achievements.
“As the largest college provider of apprenticeships in the West Midlands, with over 2,500 apprentices training with us every year, we are already looking forward to the next ceremony in September. Congratulations to all of the apprentices who were recognised tonight - we wish them all the very best for the future and continued success in their careers.”
Mark Treadwell, 21 from Stratford-upon-Avon, was one of the apprentices graduating, and also stepped in to organise the event when a colleague was taken ill. Mark completed his Level Three apprenticeship in Social Media, before securing a role as Event and Marketing Assistant at WCG.
He said: “It was a really busy week but it all went really well on the night. I hope all the apprentices enjoyed the ceremony and are proud of their achievements. By doing an apprenticeship I think we have all set ourselves up for a positive future career-path.”
Ella Jackson, 20, also from Stratford, won the Service Industries Outstanding Apprentice Award. She completed her Level Two apprenticeship in Business Administration with Robert Welch Design in Chipping Campden. “I didn’t expect to win at all," she said. "It was a really good surprise. I’ve always worked, even while I was studying, so I knew I liked hands-on experience which meant an apprenticeship was right for me, rather than university.
“One of the best things about doing the apprenticeship is becoming part of a team. I didn’t expect to build such strong relationships so soon, but I’ve really enjoyed being part of the team and I feel really valued as an employee.
“I think apprenticeships are a good choice - you get the hands-on experience, you get paid and there are opportunities to progress onwards. I’m continuing with a Level Three apprenticeship and hoping to go further with the company’s support.”
WCG offers a broad range of apprenticeships in a variety of industries. For more information, go to www.warwickshire.ac.uk/apprentices.