On Thursday 9 March, Salford City College held its highly anticipated annual Apprenticeship Awards Evening at FutureSkills @MediaCityUK. The awards recognised some of the region’s most outstanding Apprentices and employers as part of the College’s celebration of National Apprenticeship Week.

In his welcome speech to the evening’s guests, Deputy Principal, Michael Walsh said, “All week, we have been celebrating Apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals, businesses and the wider economy; and this evening will serve as a showcase of the outstanding talent Salford has to offer”.

CEO & Principal, John Spindler then took to the stage to share the Apprentice-related highlights, which included the announcement of Salford City College being number 1 for Apprenticeships in Greater Manchester with an outstanding 81% pass rate, (approximately 13% above the national average).  John also shared the stories of some inspirational Apprentices, and the College’s own commitment to employing Apprentices who work across the five centres of Salford City College.

The special guest speaker for the evening was Andrew Thorp who is an award-winning speaker and founder of the School of Mojo. He has appeared on many business and educational platforms around the world and coaches people to tell a better story about themselves and their organisation. He shared inspirational real-life stories of successful people who started from humble beginnings, and his message to Apprentices was, “If you do interesting things, interesting things will happen to you”.

Other speakers at the ceremony included John Jordan from Pendleton Together, which to date has supported 328 job outcomes, 85 new Apprenticeships, 149 work placement opportunities and has delivered, in partnership with Salford City College three bespoke traineeships. He said, “I am proud of our partnership, not many areas are blessed with a college like this and this doesn’t exist everywhere”. He gave an account of his own journey and obstacles he faced, and his inspiration to Apprentices was to, ‘Grasp every opportunity…how people deal with challenges that they are faced with is what defines them’.

Awards were then given out to Apprentices and employers from a range of sectors, with the ceremony concluding with the announcement of the ‘Apprentices of the Year’. ‘Young Apprentice of the Year’ title was given to Shannon Purcell (Childcare, Ladybird Day Nursey) for ‘going above and beyond to develop children’s learning experiences’.

As well as celebrating Apprentices and employers, the ‘Traineeship Award’ was also given out to Steven Roles. The nomination reason read, “He displayed fantastic employability qualities and impressed his tutors who regard him as being the essence of a traineeship and a credit to the scheme. It was these same qualities and attributes which he displayed during a six week work placement which led him to successfully securing an Apprenticeship with MCT Joinery”.

‘Adult Apprentice of the Year’ award went to John Horrocks (Health & Social Care, Unlimited Potential). His award nomination read, “John has transformed his life around and was nominated because he is one of the most deserving and determined students his assessor has ever worked with. He is a father of three and his Apprenticeship has been life changing in terms of his confidence, and future career prospects. He is a perfect example of someone who can achieve anything he puts his mind to.” (See full list of winners below)

If you would like to find out about Salford City College’s Apprenticeship vacancies or if you are an employer who is looking to enhance their workforce by employing an apprentice, please call all our Apprenticeships Team for more details, on 0161 631 5555, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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