Budding engineer’s first year of apprenticeship distinctions

Posted on by karen.smith

Eighteen-year-old Joshua Jenkins, whose dream of becoming a chartered engineer has got off to a perfect start with a string of distinctions from Coleg Cambria, has been shortlisted for the Foundation Apprentice of the Year award.

The ambitious Connah’s Quay teenager is one of 36 finalists in 13 categories at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru 2013, organised jointly by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW).

Apprentice engineer Joshua Jenkins

The winners of which will be announced at a high profile awards ceremony at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport on Friday, October 18.

The awards recognise the outstanding achievements of learners, employers and providers involved in the delivery of quality apprenticeships and other work-based learning programmes across Wales. The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with the support of the European Social Fund.

Showcasing excellence in skills development in Wales, the awards are sponsored by Pearson PLC with support from media partner, Media Wales.

Joshua has just completed the first year of a Foundation Apprenticeship with integrated mechanical and electrical engineering company DRB Group on Deeside. He spent the year at Coleg Cambria where he also achieved the Welsh Baccalaureate, which included organising a charity walk and bike ride to raise money for the British Heart Foundation.

The remaining three years of his apprenticeship will be spent with DRB Group with one day a week at Coleg Cambria. “The apprenticeship consists of both practical and academic elements of learning and has placed me firmly on the route for a learning experience of a lifetime,” said Joshua.

The skills gained through the first year of his apprenticeship have given him the confidence to give lectures to other students, external groups and businesses. He also acted as mentor to budding engineers from Flintshire schools at a Year 9 Engineering Challenge at Coleg Cambria.

“Once I have completed my apprenticeship, I hope to carry on gaining more experience and qualifications throughout my engineering career,” added Joshua. “My ambition is to become a fully qualified chartered engineer.”

He said winning the Foundation Apprentice of the Year would be his greatest personal achievement and would be another step along the road to becoming a professional engineer.

Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology, Ken Skates said: “The Apprenticeship Awards Cymru remind us of the incredible wealth of talent that Wales has to offer and the outstanding achievements of Wales’ learners, employers and learning providers.

“Apprenticeships play an integral role in our economy. Not only do they provide essential skills and qualifications, but are in themselves life-changing opportunities for young people and, for employers, a major investment that’s paying real dividend to their bottom line and in the skills of their workforce.

“We know that apprenticeships deliver real business benefits and that’s why the Welsh Government, with support from the European Social Fund, continues to invest heavily in opportunities for young people to take up apprenticeships and continues to support employers who want to invest in the future of their workforce.

“Through their passion and dedication, the finalists announced at this year’s awards will inspire countless others to strive for excellence and demonstrate the tremendous impact that vocational training can have. I wish all of our finalists the very best as they continue to make great contributions in their chosen fields.”

The other Foundation Apprentice of the Year finalists are Ashley Jones from Llanelli and Paula Blundell from Bryn y Baal, near Mold.

Showcasing excellence in skills development in Wales, the awards are sponsored by Pearson PLC with support from media partner, Media Wales.

More than 300 key stakeholders from the vocational education and training sector across Wales are expected to attend the high profile awards ceremony, where guests will dine out with chefs from the Welsh National Culinary Team.

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