From education to employment

Former apprentices celebrate success and front-line roles at Sheffield Children’s Hospital

Former apprentices celebrate success and front-line roles at Sheffield Children’s Hospital

A cohort of former Barnsley College Health and Social Care apprentices who worked on the front line throughout the pandemic have celebrated achieving distinctions all round.

The group completed their qualifications between July 2021 and August this year, whilst in their roles at Sheffield Children’s Hospital, after embarking on their apprenticeships as long ago as January 2019.

As well as their Level 3 Senior Healthcare Support Worker (Children and Young People) qualification, some apprentices also completed their Level 2 Maths and English qualifications and Care Certificates.

Former apprentice Liz Parker had been out of education for a number of years and was a band two support worker when she first embarked on her studies. She then secured a band three role while she was studying and went on to achieve a distinction in her apprenticeship, something she thought she ‘would never be able to do’.

Liz said: “Without the help of our tutor Nicola, I don’t think we would have achieved what we did.

“She was brilliant. She was always on the end of the phone, and she taught us things in a way which we could really understand. Nicola really would go above and beyond for us.

“At the beginning, I thought to myself, ‘I’m never going to be able to do this’ and look at me now.

“It was all so challenging, balancing working and studying through the pandemic, but it was so worth it.

“Another great thing I’ve got out of this experience is meeting such great people, and of course achieving a distinction at the end of it.”

Nicola Lovell, Barnsley College Apprenticeships Manager, who taught the apprentices, added:

“This is such a great achievement to be celebrating with my former students, and now brilliant support workers from Sheffield Children’s Hospital.

“They have had so many challenges to overcome. Some had been out of education for a number of years, and returning is a challenge in itself.

“With the added challenge of Covid-19 and working in the NHS, this is a massive achievement.

“To have achieved distinctions during unprecedented times is phenomenal. I am immensely proud of this group of students.”

If you would like to see what apprenticeships are on offer at Barnsley College, please visit: 

Alternatively, visit the College’s next Open Day on Thursday 24 November, 4.00pm – 6.00pm. Further details about the event can be found on the website:

Barnsley College offers a range of study programmes including full and part-time vocational courses, apprenticeships, T Levels and university-level courses.

There’s still time for 16 to 18-year-olds not currently in education, employment, or training to apply for this academic year. Through a personalised timetable they could build their skills for the future – whether it’s a mix of art, engineering, digital and fashion; or construction, catering, games design, music, or anything in between.

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