Three Newtownabbey students have been recognised for success at Belfast Metropolitan College’s Apprenticeship and Training Awards.
Dean McIlwaine, Ryan McCullough and Eoin Trainor were awarded at the annual presentation.
Nineteen-year-old Dean won the Apprentice Award in the area of Barbering for his high level of achievement throughout his Level Three ApprenticeshipsNI programme.
He currently works in a salon and has his own client base.
Dean was also commended by his tutors for providing care and compassion to his fellow students.
Ryan McCullough, aged 21, scooped the Apprentice Award in the area of IT and Telecommunications.
He has completed his 18 -month training programme and is now a full time employee of Capita Managed IT Solutions.
Eoin Trainor, aged 18, was awarded runner-up in the category of Work Placement Award.
He successfully completed his Level Two Professional Cookery Diploma while working at Barnaby’s, in Ballyclare. Eoin will progress to his Level Three training in September 2014.
The unique awards ceremony celebrated the achievements of Belfast Met’s learners, staff and partner organisations involved in the delivery of training programmes at the college.
Twenty successful students, aged between 17 and 27, received awards recognising their achievements through their current or recently completed ApprenticeshipsNI, Programme Led Apprenticeship or Training for Success programmes.
The student award categories included the Apprentice Award, Training Award, work placement, essential skills and Endeavour Award with winners spanning a range of vocational areas such as hospitality, construction, engineering, hairdressing, IT, financial services and motor vehicle.
The winning students demonstrated high levels of achievement, outstanding commitment, dedication to learning and perseverance through challenging circumstances.
Marie-Thérèse McGivern, principal and chief executive at Belfast Met, congratulated the award winners saying: “It is with great pride that I congratulate each and every one of our student finalists, and particularly those winners, who have worked so hard to reach their goals and take the next step in attaining a relevant job within their chosen industry. We wish our Apprenticeship and Training students every success in their futures, and hope their learning journeys with us continue for years to come.”
The awards also recognised nine of the college’s partner organisations.
“We would like to thank and congratulate the highly committed organisations who, through joint training programmes with the college, are playing an important role in providing the talent to fill future jobs in Northern Ireland,” the chief executive added.”
Employment and Learning Minster, Dr Stephen Farry, said:
“I congratulate all the award winning apprentices. Belfast Met and the participating employers have
worked collaboratively to provide the learning and workplace opportunities for the apprentices to
gain the technical and employability skills which are being recognised this evening. The qualifications
and skills gained will not only improve their employability now, but stand the learners in good stead
for their future careers.
“Last week I announced the new Northern Ireland Strategy on Apprenticeships which will be central
to transforming our skills landscape and to securing our current and future economic success. I see
Apprenticeships as the high quality educational pathway of the future, combining learning, training
and employment, with opportunities in my new Strategy to allow you to take an apprenticeship right
up to Doctorate (PhD) level.
“A focus on higher level apprenticeships will be complemented by new progression routes
and assistance through an improved system of youth training to enable people to access
Belfast Met currently has 900 individuals engaged in work-based learning across sectors as diverse
as construction and engineering to hospitality and creative and service industries.
Through its various Training Programmes, new and existing employees and work placement students
have been given the opportunity to develop skills, achieve qualifications and enhance their career
prospects while helping employers develop their business and raise the prosperity of Northern