Auto apprentice drives forward at the annual In-Comm awards

An automotive apprentice with flair for manufacturing and helping other workersdevelop their skills stole the show recently at the 4th annual In-Comm Training Awards #icawards15

Josh Watson, who works at Lichfield-based Faurecia Interior Systems, was named as the Peter Wood ‘Outstanding Apprentice of the Year, beating off the challenge of 100 individuals from across the West Midlands.

He impressed our judges with his dedication to his studies, combining theoretical learning with an ability to have a major impact on the shopfloor, becoming an integral part of the team in the process.

The apprentice was joined on stage by other winners, including Martin Hardy (Wedge Group). Martin has been an excellent learner throughout his programme, not only does he have a very busy job but he is also a manager for several staff who have simultaneously completed Level 3 Management qualifications themselves for which he has supported them through this. Martin has a positive attitude to learning an development and has always taken an active role in his own development.

He shared the Outstanding Adult Learner of the Year title with Michael Kerry Millward (Moog Aircraft Group) who demonstrated drive, determination and commitment not only to his designated project and team but the enthusiasm and willingness to help and support other project team leaders when required. Michael has shown the desire, enthusiasm and passion for the programme and willingness for future personal development.

It wasn’t just the employees hitting the headlines at the prestigious event, which attracted more than 250 people to our annual ceremony at the Grand Station in Wolverhampton.

Moog Aircraft Group, Norgren IMI and Baldwins also overcame their peers by collecting the Employer of the Year Titles for Adult Learners, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies Apprenticeship Learners and Business Support Apprenticeship Learners respectively.

When we first started to organise these awards, the apprentice career path was off the radar and there was very little interest in it. What a difference four years make, but we still have work to do to convince young people and adult learners that the vocational route can make a major difference,” explained Rebecca Phillips, In-Comm Training and Business Services.

“2015 has been a record year for entries and reflects the fact we have more than 400 people training either at our academy in Aldridge or across manufacturers and professional servicesfirms across the West Midlands.

“The quality has also gone up another notch and this is reflected in our winners, who will no doubt go on to have successful careers in the working world.

She continued: “We also like to make sure the employers are recognised. Without firms willing to invest in new talent and their existing workers then the skills gap will only grow wider.

Other winners on the evening included:

  • Rachel Green (Baldwins): Apprentice of the YearBusiness Support

Rachel began her apprenticeship in 2013 and from the very start took on her role with enthusiasm. Her work both on and off the job has always been of a high quality and has seen her promoted to a more senior position training and mentoring others. This is her second consecutive In-Comm award.

  • Stephanie Sparkes (Integrated Water Services): Adult Learner of the Year – Business Support

Stephanie has progressed from her Intermediate to advanced level in business administration and has shown a strong work ethic & commitment to her own training and development. Work is produced to a high standard and her desire to progress within her company is a credit to her.

  • Marta Pruska (Rubberneck Fittings Limited): Apprentice of the Year – Supervisory Management

Marta has consistently ensured that she has applied her new skills and learning within her job role. She has overcome the barrier of English not being her first language and puts every effort in to ensuring that she achieves all goals and targets that are set for her.

  • Ryan Blair (Baker & Finnemore): Business Improvement Techniques Intermediate

Ryan has shown the desire for his personal development by taking the next step in his career in quality assurance and is making excellent progress. He has demonstrated the commitment and enthusiasm to learn and take on board different skills, techniques and approach in order to develop and implement changes for the benefit of his business.

  • Luke Godden (GestampTallent): Apprentice of the Year – Engineering & Manufacturing Technologies

Luke submits excellent work ensuring it is always handed in before the required date and is of anexcellent standard. He is committed to his own personal development and driven to achieving the best he can.

  • Mark Chamberlain (Norgren IMI): Most Improved Apprentice of the Year

Mark has been the learner that has achieved and shown improvement the most since starting his learning journey with us. He has contributed and applied himself, working hard to achieve his goals set.

  • Alastair Green (Truflo Marine Valves): Tom Wood Memorial Apprentice’s Apprentice of the Year

Alastair has shown commitment to his group and has been judged as the one who has contributed most to his group, going above and beyond.

Rebecca continued: “The Awards are only made possible by some great organisations sponsoring the different categories.

These include Aktrion Group, Aldridge Fabrication, Alpha Drive Engineering, B Mason & Sons, City of Wolverhampton College, Darlaston Rotary Club, Key Precision, Made in the Midlands, Pro-Mil Engineering, Rical Group, Salop Design, University of Wolverhampton and Wedge Group Galvanising.”