Posted on 04 March 2020

Leeds College of Building is celebrating after scooping a top accolade at the national FE Week & AELP AAC Apprenticeship 2020 Awards.

The College was named ‘Apprenticeship Provider of the Year,’ beating off stiff competition at a glittering ceremony at the ICC Birmingham last night (3rd March).

Finalists in the category included Abingdon & Witney College, Herefordshire & Worcestershire Group Training Association, Gen2 Training, and Weston College.

Over the last decade, a focus on apprenticeships has resulted in a massive growth of Leeds College of Building’s technical and professional training as well as maintaining high volumes in building, and services trade apprenticeships. The College also provides off the job training for numerous apprentices from other providers.

Areas as varied as Building Services Engineering, Civil Engineering, Construction Management, Quantity Surveying, and Transport Planning saw just ten apprentices enrolling in 2011. By 2018, this figure stood at over 700 (6,900% increase) with female apprentices increasing from one to over 150.

Four years ago, the College had a total of 965 apprentices; by the end of the last academic year, that figure stood at nearly 2,250, across all areas of the College’s provision. During the same period, Higher Level Apprenticeships increased from 73 to 465, an incredible 536% upsurge.

More than 500 sector leaders, staff, and apprentices gathered to find out the results of the awards, run by FE Week and the Association of Employment and Learning Providers; new Apprenticeship and Skills Minister, Gillian Keegan, was in attendance to celebrate the winners.

Finalists were announced in February at a Parliamentary Reception in Westminster, hosted by Robert Halfon MP and Emma Hardy MP. Forty-four organisations and individuals were shortlisted in 22 categories after more than 350 entries were submitted by colleges, training providers, and employers.

Judges said it was “clear” from their application and evidence that they “were enthusiastically dedicated to helping apprentices achieve their full potential, and absolutely committed to steering the next generation of innovators”.

LCB Team at FE Week Apprenticeship Awards

Derek Whitehead, Principal & CEO at Leeds College of Building, said:
“This is a tremendous national achievement for the College, staff, apprentices, and employers. On behalf of governors and the senior team, I would like to thank Vicky Patterson, our Curriculum Manager for Technical and Professional Apprenticeships (for co-ordinating the nomination) and all staff across College for their hard work, commitment, and valued contribution in providing high quality delivery through our daily work in supporting apprentices and their employers.”

AELP chief executive Mark Dawe said:
“We’ve had another fabulous evening celebrating all that is best about apprenticeships and the hard-working people who offer bright futures to learners who embark on our flagship skills programme. Congratulations to a great set of winners and it’s really pleasing that Gillian Keegan has been here with us to hear about these wonderful success stories.”