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Awards Commemorate Exceptional Apprentices and Their Employers

Category: Awards, training, Business, employers, apprenticeship, encourage

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City College Norwich’s annual Apprenticeship Award was held at Norwich Cathedral’s Hostry during the National Apprenticeship Week. The event placed the spotlight upon some of the excellent Apprentices, along with the employers who encourage the Apprenticeship training.

National Apprenticeship Week commemorates Apprenticeships and the positive effect that they have on businesses, individuals and the wider economy. City College Norwich saw its Apprentices achieving substantially with the support of some high-quality staff and outstanding employers, which led to achievement rates exceeding the national average by about 15%.

Since the Apprentices’ achievements was singled out from more than one thousand learners in Apprenticeships delivered by the institution with employers all over Norfolk and other parts, there was a lot for the invited awardees and guests to commemorate and feel proud of.

The award’s night witnessed 8 awards given to Apprentices as an acknowledgement for their progress and achievements in diverse Apprenticeships, such as mechanical engineering, dental nursing, childcare, marketing, sales and more.

The Overall Apprentice of the Year was named from amongst the winners. Chloe Walters, 19, from Fakenham was given the honour this year. She recently finished an Apprenticeship with Beech House Dental Surgery, Dereham in Dental Nursing. Chloe completed her Apprenticeship program in the shortest time possible, i.e., within one year of leaving Fakenham College.

She was quoted saying that being a part of this apprenticeship program was an honour, as well as a blessing and she was surprised to win the award. She shared her experience of how she managed to surpass the apprenticeship exam, which she sat the day after losing a family member, and how Melanie Newton, her assessor, and her employer was extremely supportive. They did not rush her or compel her to take the exam, but she wanted to do it. She offered her gratitude to Helen and Mel, her dentists, for being supportive throughout the course.

When asked about Chloe, Dr. Helen Yazdian-Tehrani, a senior dental surgeon with Beech House Dental Surgery, said that Chloe had been very dedicated and keen to learn throughout the Apprenticeship. Unlike other Apprentices, she would come up and ask anything that she could not understand or did not know. This is what fuelled her capability of learning and taking on new information. She was able to quickly work with other staff in a team, which is crucial in healthcare. Chloe tried to gain as much knowledge as she could from the other members of team and that helped in her make quick progress. It needs to be mentioned that, she went through various ups and down throughout the training period, but after each setback, she came back with renewed vigour. At present, she is training her team members and it seems like she has come full circle.

17-year old Michael Newbold from Dreham was also among the award winners. He won the Creative & Digital, Marketing and Enterprise Apprentice of the Year. Presently, Michael works for Cabins Unlimited in Dereham and has completed an Apprenticeship in Sales and Marketing. 

Michael said that the Apprenticeship program has been extremely good. From not knowing how to answer a call and speak to a customer, he can now not only speak to customers, but also go to show site and meet manufacturers. He is mainly responsible for dealing with customers and placing orders of buildings to the manufacturers that the customers has bought. He added that the apprenticeship was very good, as one gains the qualification, along with work experience. He considers it a real honour to have received the award.

Rob Scott, The Director of Cabins Unlimited, did not miss the chance to show appreciation to Michael. He said that Michael has performed incredibly well. Though he started his apprenticeship journey as a shy and quiet young man working on social media and marketing, he is now running almost all types of customer-related works right from offering quotations to receiving actual payment. He does a lot of work and has become an important part of the business. Presently, he is serving a full-time contract and completed the apprenticeship about 4 months before the actual date of completion. He is truly an essential asset to the organisation.

Alice Hurn, 21, from Attleborough working at Playplus Nursery has been named the childcare, Education and Early Years Apprentice of the Year. She started her Apprenticeship last year as an Apprentice Early Years Practitioner. On winning the award she stated that the Apprenticeship was great. She always had a desire to work with children and this turned out to be a natural progression for her. She said that the benefit of being in the Apprenticeship program was that she could learn while earning money. It was a matter of immense pleasure for her to hear ‘Good Morning, Miss Hurn’ from the kids. She said that the association with children took her back to her childhood. She became a more confident person.  

The owner of PlayPlus Nursery, which is based at Attleborough Junior School, Dawn Howes, said that when Alice came she was very anxious, but gradually overcame it. She started working with the kids and their parents, did outstanding paperwork and blossomed with time. She has become really confident now.

A resident of Norwich, Daemon Disney, 19, is another award winner who successfully demonstrated his outstanding progress and commitment. He daily travelled to Snetterton for his work with Harkness Auto Services as a mechanic.

On receiving the award for Engineering Apprentice of the Year, Disney said that he is fond of bikes or cars since he was 9 years of age and it was his hobby. At the age of 15, he started to work at Harkness Auto Services every Saturday and from that, they took him in as an Apprentice. He also added that Ian Harkness has always supported him.

On receiving a City College Norwich Apprenticeship Award, Daemon said that it feels nice to be recognised for his hard work. He further added it is brilliant to see that what started off as a hobby has grown to this.  

The Owner of Harkness Auto Services, Ian Harkness, said that when Daemon started working with the firm, he used to reach the train station each day by cycle and take the train to Attleborough. From Attleborough, the staff used to pick him up. This continued for few years and it is due to his commitment towards the work that they committed to supporting him. Day by day he progressed and is now one of the prime mechanics in the firm. He will now be given training so that he can become eligible for MOTs and be involved with the management side of the business, as well. Ian said that Daemon possesses the skills needed for management. He added that Daemon is amazing and has earned immense respect from the team members.

Along with celebrating the success of individual Apprentices, 4 employers too were given awards. The Apprenticeship Employer of the Year Awards went to Flagship Group (Large Employer), LSI Architects (Small to Medium Employer) and The White Horse Chedgrave (Micro category).

Julia Watling, the Head of Learning and Development, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, won the Overall Contribution to Apprenticeships award.

Apprenticeship Open Evening was held on 16th March (Thursday) at City College Norwich, Ipswich Road, NR2 2LJ from 5.30pm to 8pm to help those interested in exploring more about the Apprenticeship opportunities with City College Norwich and Easton & Otley College. The turnout was massive.

City College Norwich Apprenticeship Award Winners 2017


Business Apprentice of the Year (Admin, Finance, Management, Customer Service)
Lauren Fulcher, Norwich City Council

Service Industries Apprentice of the Year (Hairdressing, Hospitality and Warehousing)
Jazmin Harwood, The Necton Windmill

Construction Apprentice of the Year (Electrotech, Plumbing, Trowel and Wood Occupations)
Jordan Rix, Norse

Creative & Digital, Marketing and Enterprise Apprentice of the Year
Michael Newbold, Cabins Unlimited

Health Apprentice of the Year
Chloe Walters, Beech House Dental Surgery

Higher Apprentice of the Year
Peter Luff, Norfolk and Suffolk, Foundation Trust

Engineering Apprentice of the Year
Daemon Disney, Harkness Auto Services

Childcare, Education and Early Years Apprentice of the Year
Alice Hurn, Playplus Nursery

Overall Apprentice of the Year
Chloe Walters, Beech House Dental Surgery


Apprenticeship Employer of the Year (Small to Medium – 10 to 250 staff)
LSI Architects

Apprenticeship Employer of the Year (Micro – up to 10 staff)
The White Horse Chedgrave

Apprenticeship Employer of the Year (Large – over 250 staff)
Flagship Group

Overall Contribution to Apprenticeships
Julia Watling, Head of Learning and Development, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust


Are you interested in a career with City College Norwich? Please click here.

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VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please email [email protected] for more information.

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