Yacht-builders Pendennis has sailed away with a prestigious Large Employer of the Year at the annual national Apprenticeship Awards. Now in their fifth year, the Learning and Skills Council’s Apprenticeship Awards are designed to recognise employers who are successfully using Apprenticeships to improve business performance and the key role apprentices play in today’s business world, spanning the breadth of the economy from accountancy, engineering, construction and veterinary nursing.
Pendennis pioneered an Apprenticeship in Yacht Surface Finishing, the first qualification of its kind in the country. Jill Carr, training manger at Pendennis champions the business benefits of apprentices:
“One of the main benefits of our Apprenticeship programme is that the apprentices inject skills, youth, longevity, and flexibility into our niche business. Apprenticeships help us mould employees, through training and on the job experience, thus providing us with the right level of skills and discipline.”
Speaking at the event, Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills, John Denham urged the nation to get behind Apprenticeships:
“Over the past decade we have more than doubled the number of young people and adults starting Apprenticeships, spanning the breadth of our economy from accountancy to engineering, construction to veterinary nursing."
“But we plan to do more. In the next decade all qualified school leavers will have the right to an apprenticeship. It will become a typical choice for young people and adults – at the same time ensuring that businesses get the vital skills they need."
“Apprenticeships are at the heart of the country’s economy. They unlock England’s talent and are the key to our future prosperity." Stephen Gardner, Director of Apprenticeships, Learning and Skills Council says: “The commitment and foresight of all these exceptional employers is tremendous, not only in improving their business performance but also in giving talented people the opportunity to achieve their goals."
This year’s Awards attracted a record number of entries, with almost 1,400 individuals and companies all over England vying to be named Apprentice or Employer of the Year at the evening’s ceremony