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Junior Apprenticeship Celebration Event 2024

NPTC Group of Colleges recently hosted the annual Junior Apprenticeship Celebration Event at Neath College.

This event celebrates the success of learners who have taken part in the Junior Apprenticeship Programme over the past two years.  The programme works in partnership with local schools to support those who might learn more effectively in a practical setting.  Learners select a practical subject they enjoy and start their full-time training at college aged 14, studying through Year 10 and Year 11, with the opportunity to gain GCSE Maths and English alongside a vocational qualification.  Junior Apprentices receive support and guidance throughout the programme from our study coaches and wellbeing staff and take part in enrichment activities to help them develop and progress.  Upon successful completion of the programme, Junior Apprentices can progress onto another course at college, undertake an Apprenticeship, or move on to employment or training using the skills and experience they have gained.

The Celebration event was well attended at Neath College, and internationally, with one award winner tuning in via Microsoft Teams all the way from Tenerife!  All of the Junior Apprentices received a formal Certificate of Completion for successfully completing the programme and there were also some fun, informal awards devised by staff, including the Sleeping Beauty AwardTantastic AwardDrama Queen and Best Supporting Actress awards, among others!  This year’s completing Junior Apprentices were:

Junior Apprenticeship Hair and Beauty

Olivia Davies                                 Ysgol Cwm Brombil

Emily Jones                                    Llangatwg Community School

Jenny Mainwaring                     St. Joseph’s RC Comprehensive School

Chelsie Manning                        Ysgol Cwm Brombil

Lilly-Anne May                             Cwmtawe Community School

Ava Louise Williams                Llangatwg Community School

Lexus Williams                           St. Joseph’s RC Comprehensive School

Junior Apprenticeship Motor Vehicle

Llion Coles                                     Llangatwg Community School

Morgan Davies-Mogford       Llangatwg Community School

Olivia Hopkins                             Dwr y Felin Comprehensive School

Dylan Newth                                 Llangatwg Community School

The event also allowed staff and learners to remember and pay their tributes to Phil McNeil, a staff member who sadly passed away this year.  Phil had worked with the Junior Apprentices as a Study Skills Coach since the College adopted the programme in 2018.  Phil often joked about being the best Study Coach working with the Junior Apprentices.  Phil was posthumously granted his self-appointed title when he was announced the winner of the Senior Executive Junior Apprenticeship Study Coach Award.

Ken O’Grady: Senior Junior Apprenticeship Officer, oversees the Junior Apprenticeship Programme at NPTC Group of Colleges and had this to say about the evening:

“After two years of hard work from learners and every one teaching and supporting them, it is an honour to celebrate our Junior Apprentices’ completion of the programme.  It’s great to reflect on how much individuals have developed as young people over the course of the programme and to recognise their hard work and achievements in front of their families, friends, College staff, and partner schools, is truly a highlight of the year for all involved.  Seeing how much this means to our young people has to be the best way possible to thank everyone who supported their journey.”

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