From education to employment

SERC Recognise Quinn’s Bar and Restaurant with Business Excellence Award

Quinn’s Bar and Restaurant Newcastle has received a South Eastern Regional College Business Excellence Award for their Commitment to the Work-Based Apprenticeship Programme. Pictured (L- R) Quinn’s winning team: Matthew Hannah, Sous Chef, who recently completed his Level 3 Work-Based Apprenticeship in Professional Cookery, Head Chef, Michael Keenan, General Manager, Ciaran McCabe with Damien McKibben, SERC.

South Eastern Regional College (SERC) has recognised Quinn’s Bar and Restaurant, Newcastle in their annual Business Excellence Awards for supporting education and employability.

The popular bar and restaurant is one of eleven local employers recognised with the accolade.

William Greer, Chief Training and Contracts Officer at SERC said, “SERC is the most successful College in Northern Ireland. Our contribution to shaping the workforce of the future and ensuring people update and develop their skills is second to none. Our innovative, employer-led approach creates better skills, better jobs, better economy and ultimately, better lives for the people of Northern Ireland.

He added “We are proud to work with over 7000 employers and businesses across the country. Our Business Excellence Awards recognise just some of our partner employers’ commitment to the education and training process and to continuous investment in skills development of their staff and we congratulate them and wish them continued success.”

Quinn’s was recognised with an Award for their Commitment to Work-Based Apprenticeship Programme. Head Chef Michael Keenan said, “We are delighted to receive this Award from SERC which recognises, not only our commitment to training, but the importance mentoring and of life-long learning for people in the industry and our business here in the local community.

He added, “We are continually impressed with the standard of young people coming through to us from SERC, ready for work and to complete their qualifications and training with us and the College, often going on to become full time employees.  

Michael, who himself trained through the College, was Calor Gas Young Chef of the Year in 1992, and has continued this passion for learning, recently completing a Level 5 qualification for teaching.   He said, “Here at Quinn’s, as well as training the students, we are keen to mentor them in all aspects of the business, instilling a passion for producing great local food along with an understanding of costs – there is no point in cooking brilliant food if you cannot stay in business.  

He concluded, “We love training the young people, whether in the kitchen, working in the bar staff or front of house – every role in this business is important and a great team makes for a great place to learn and work.”

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