In the same month that 149 new apprentices joined Jaguar Land Rover, the country's largest automotive employer has taken home two prestigious honours at the National Apprenticeship Awards regional final.
Jaguar Land Rover was named 'Macro Employer of the Year' for the West Midlands region in recognition of its tireless commitment to the advancement of the apprentice agenda through delivery of pioneering apprenticeship programmes across all of its sites, including Halewood in Merseyside. A second award was presented to Benjamin Lamb who was named 'Advanced Apprentice of the Year', a hotly contested category designed to acknowledge and celebrate an exceptional individual contribution within the workplace.
Speaking of the award success, Bethany Evans, Head of Learning and Development at Jaguar Land Rover said: "I am delighted to see Jaguar Land Rover's apprenticeship programme and indeed an apprentice who is experiencing it first-hand have been recognised by this independent panel of experts.
"Jaguar Land Rover has a long and firm commitment to vocational education and is the UK's largest provider of apprenticeships in the automotive manufacturing sector; in fact our comprehensive programme was a key contributor to Jaguar Land Rover being named Responsible Business of the Year. We firmly believe that the future of our business lies in the hands of a new generation of engineers and innovators and we are developing that talent today."
There are currently almost 500 apprentices undertaking Jaguar Land Rover's advanced and higher apprenticeships which are designed to combine the very best in real world experience and academic learning. Benjamin Lamb who was singled out by the judging panel for his academic achievements, dedication and professionalism is one of 380 apprentices embarking on the advanced apprenticeship programme which provides candidates, attaining a minimum of five GCSE A-C grades including: English, maths, science and/or technology, with a truly blended learning experience.
Benjamin who is currently working in the Vehicle Safety Test Laboratory at Jaguar Land Rover's Advanced Engineering facility in Whitley said: "To be named 'Advanced Apprentice of the Year' in the West Midlands region is an incredible achievement, particularly when you consider the calibre of candidates in this category. I am proud to accept this award in recognition of my achievements so far and thank all those people at Jaguar Land Rover who are supporting and guiding me through my apprenticeship. I look forward to the remainder of my journey both on the apprenticeship programme and beyond in what I know will be a rewarding career".
In addition to the four year advanced programme, Jaguar Land Rover has been instrumental in shaping, designing, piloting and implementing a new technically focused, higher apprenticeship framework aimed at A-Level entrants. The six year higher apprenticeship programme is now in its second year and provides students with the unique opportunity to work alongside world-class engineers in cutting edge facilities whilst studying towards a fully funded engineering degree from Warwick University.
Both Jaguar Land Rover and Benjamin Lamb will now proceed through to a final national judging stage with overall winners named at the UK's largest national skills and careers event, The Skills Show, at the NEC in Birmingham on 14 November.
To find out more about an apprenticeship at Jaguar Land Rover or to register your interest in the 2014 apprenticeship programme visit www.jaguarlandrovercareers.com or come along and talk to some of our apprentices at The Skills Show.