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Outstanding Contribution to Apprenticeships in Gloucestershire Award 2019

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After a very busy National Apprenticeship Week supporting the Fire it Up campaign the South West Apprenticeship Company Ltd (SWAC) were delighted to attend the annual Gloucestershire Apprenticeship Awards at the Cheltenham Racecourse. 

However, this time we were on a mission to get our Director Clare Vertigen there in secret as she was unaware of her nomination for the Outstanding Contribution to Apprenticeships in Gloucestershire Award.

The full SWAC team arrived joined by Miriam Venner the Assistant Principal for Apprenticeships and Skills at City of Bristol College and took our seats and settled in for the first round of awards.

When the announcements arrived at the Outstanding Contribution to Apprenticeships category the judges had decided the winner based on an individual in the county who had really helped drive Gloucestershire’s apprenticeship campaigns through inspiration, energy and imagination.  The final announcement was to a very surprised Clare Vertigen confirming she was the winner!

The Award is an absolute honour for SWAC and of course Clare as we are immensely proud of her as our director and know that she works tirelessly to promote apprenticeships and to bring employers, apprentices and training providers together to achieve more.

Rachel Sugden described Clare as an:

Apprenticeship Ambassador who actively promotes Apprenticeships every day to local businesses, schools, parents, apprentice applicants and has a large social media presence. Clare is regularly invited to share her knowledge at employer focussed events and within schools in the county.

“Clare supports businesses with the setup of apprenticeship programmes and prides on being truly impartial, she will always look at what their needs and objectives for taking on an apprentice and offer advice based on those needs. Clare will help them to develop a job description if they don’t have one, match this to an apprenticeship qualification and search for training providers and of course offer to support the company with SWAC’s paid services but when that is not appropriate or needed will refer and signpost the company direct to the relevant training provider, following up the referral to ensure they are satisfied with the outcome. Clare is also involved in supporting the Forest of Dean Economic Partnership (FEP2050) and the Forest of Dean Entrepreneurs with several initiatives particularly the Education and Skills sub group.

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“Clare never stops promoting apprenticeships in Gloucestershire!

“Since setting up SWAC they have employed 212 apprentices in Gloucestershire, all placed within their host business partners receiving dedicated mentoring support from SWAC. With the extra support SWAC gives their hosts and apprentices a staggering 98% of Gloucestershire apprentices have progressed into full-time employment or a higher apprenticeship on completion and 98% have completed their apprenticeship – both well above the national average!

“SWAC’s Gloucestershire apprentices have gone into senior management roles, won awards, set-up their own businesses – SWAC encourages them all to become ambassadors and share their apprenticeship journey. Congratulations Clare!!!”

And huge congratulations to all of the other winners on the night!

About The South West Apprenticeship Company: Dedicated to the continuous development of all our apprentices. The company has regional teams in the Gloucestershire, West of England, Wiltshire and North Devon. 

Through the SWAC model, the employer does not directly employ the apprentice. Instead, SWAC employs the apprentice, and the organisation becomes the ‘host’ employer.  SWAC works in partnership with their partner providers to ensure both apprentice and host are supported through the whole Apprenticeship placement to help the apprentice to reach their full potential.

SWAC would be happy to discuss Apprenticeships further with local employers who feel they would like that extra support to meet their business objectives with their own SWAC apprentice.

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