From education to employment

GC Apprentice Sinead Smith = South West Apprentice of the Year!

Gloucestershire College (GC) apprentice Sinead Smith won the title of Apprentice of the Year at the South West Skills Awards held in Exeter during April. The prestigious awards ceremony, organised by the Learning Skills Council (LSC), recognises the achievements of individuals and organisations in learning and training across the region.

Sinead, 19, from Podsmead, Gloucester, works for the Administration and Funds Team at GC alongside completing her Apprenticeship in Business Administration at GC. She completed her NVQ Level 2 three months ahead of schedule, was top of her class, achieving 80 percent in her final exam, and is currently studying for NVQ Level 3.

Since completing her NVQ Level 2, Sinead has also received an EMAGINE (Ethnic Minorities Achieving Goals in Education) award and played a vital role in her team winning two internal customer service awards last year. Sinead attended the South West Skills Awards with her manager, Karen Bishop, co-worker Fiona King and her mum. The award was presented by Scottish rugby and Strictly Come Dancing star Kenny Logan.

Sinead said, “Winning this award meant everything to me. I never thought I could ever achieve something like this. The whole experience of going to the award ceremony was amazing and winning the award was an added bonus. I’m really looking forward to the nationals in July and fingers crossed I’ll win!”

Karen Bishop said “Seeing Sinead win this award was the proudest moment of my professional career. Being named as South West Apprentice of the Year is such a high accolade and so deserved for all of her hard work and dedication to her role within the Admissions and Funds Team. I hope that Sinead’s success continues to soar as she has made such a positive difference to our team; my fingers are firmly crossed for the national finals in July.”

Malcolm Gillespie, Regional Director of the LSC said: “The Awards are a fantastic celebration of the achievements of all our finalists, individuals and companies alike. From overcoming great odds to excelling in their Apprenticeships – our individual learners should be extremely proud. Employers have also demonstrated the fantastic contribution they have made to skills development across the region and it was wonderful to see them receive the recognition they deserve.”

To find out more about taking on a Gloucestershire College apprentice please contact the GC Apprenticeship Unit on 01452 563404.


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