The 17th annual National Apprenticeship Awards has just unveiled the best of England’s apprentice employers, apprentices, rising stars, and individuals who champion apprenticeships.
This year the awarding body received over a total of over 1,100 applications from across England, with 28 employer, apprentice and individual national winners and highly commended announced—from 24 different towns and cities across England.
The awards shine the spotlight on business and individual success in apprenticeships, and this year was particularly poignant as a result of the many additional challenges employers and apprentices have faced as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The national ceremony showcased examples of where apprentices have gone above and beyond in their apprenticeship to make a real difference, with winners announced at all levels and from sectors including construction, engineering and business, alongside employers from the health, leisure and ICT sectors.
“Huge congratulations to all of the winners,” said Health Secretary Gavin Williamson. “It’s fantastic to see so many excellent examples of employers of all sizes embracing the benefits of apprenticeships, and all the apprentices who have gone above and beyond,” he continued.
“The National Apprenticeships Awards are a brilliant opportunity to showcase the power of apprenticeships to transform lives and businesses, while helping people of all ages and backgrounds to get ahead,” said Williamson.
“With such strong competition in businesses right across the country, the winners of this year’s National Apprenticeship Awards should hold their heads up high,” said Chancellor Rishi Sunak.
“There’s a reason why so many apprentices stay in a job or do further training afterwards – it’s because apprenticeships work,” he continued. “That’s why we’re doing everything we can to make sure people can continue learning while expanding their job prospects—much like today’s winners.”
Sunak went on to say that, because of this, the government has announced cash incentives to employers who hire apprentices, so that businesses of all sizes can benefit from their talents.
“Each and every apprentice is vital to the national effort to recover from the pandemic and build back better,” he said.
Apprenticeships are at the heart of the Chancellor Sunak’s Plan for Jobs, a scheme designed to help the UK’s recovery from the pandemic. Through the Plan for Jobs a total of £1.6 billion will be invested in scaling up various employment support schemes, including training and apprenticeships that will help people who are looking for a job.
“We are delighted to reveal the National Apprenticeship Awards 2020 winners today, recognising the employers, apprentices and champions of apprenticeships, as well as the rising stars of our future workforce,” said Peter Mucklow, Director, Apprenticeships, Education and Skills Funding Agency.
“The number and quality of entries this year was outstanding, demonstrating the importance of apprenticeships for employers and individuals alike,” he continued. “I thank all entrants for taking time to share their apprenticeship journey, whilst congratulating those who have won, or were highly commended.”
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