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GC wins national apprenticeship award

16 November 2017

Gloucestershire College has received national recognition for its innovative apprenticeships programme, winning the Association of Colleges (AoC) Beacon Award for the Promotion and Delivery of Successful Apprenticeships.

Following an in-depth submission and rigorous interviews and assessments as part of the shortlisting process, the College was awarded the national honour at a glittering ceremony in Birmingham earlier this week.

The GC Apprenticeships Programme has increased the number of 19+ apprentices and the development of more progression pathways has further developed a highly skilled workforce for local employers, e.g. higher and degree apprenticeships in engineering and four new apprenticeships standards in IT at Level 3 progressing on to Level 4, with professional qualifications included.

The award judges were impressed by the success rates of the apprenticeship provision to well above the national average as GC became one of the leading providers in the South West; expanding the breadth of provision and working responsively with local employers, the community, schools and business organisations. 

Despite the number of apprenticeship starts being down nationally by 61% since the introduction of the levy, GC’s apprenticeship starts increased by 32%, with an overall success rate of 84% (national average 67% in 2015-16).

Matthew Burgess, Principal and Chief Executive of Gloucestershire College, said: “I am delighted that the College received a Beacon Award recognising the outstanding work we do with apprenticeships. The Beacon Awards are a national event that seeks to recognise the very best in innovation, creativity and practice within the sector, so this is a considerable achievement.

“To be recognised nationally for our work in this area reflects not only the outstanding outcomes for the apprentices themselves, but also the impact on the employers’ businesses and the way that the College responds to employer needs in this area. 

“This award is recognition of the fantastic work carried out firstly within our Apprenticeship Unit, which leads our work in this area, and also in curriculum areas delivering programmes to our apprentices and, indeed, all areas of the College that support this activity, and I would like to thank everybody involved in this.” 

Julie Tegg, Head of Work-based Learning at GC, said: “It’s a really proud moment for everyone at Gloucestershire College. We’re really happy with the work we do and I think this award is justification of that.” 

Carole Stott MBE, Chair of the AoC Charitable Trust, said: “Every year the Beacon Awards receive many excellent submissions and the high standard made it hard for assessors to determine the winning application in each category. 

“All the entries demonstrated the commitment of colleges to create the best possible experience for their students. Gloucestershire College can be rightly proud to be named as the winners of their category.”

GC has been at the forefront of driving apprenticeship growth for several years now; leading high-profile campaigns and winning several regional awards. Through the GC Apprenticeships Programme, it has developed a centre of excellence for apprenticeships, increasing overall success rates each year and expanding the range and levels of apprenticeships to meet employer, community and local skills needs.

To find out more about how Gloucestershire College’s award-winning apprenticeship programme can help your business grow, visit

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We have a lot of experience offering Apprenticeships and work-related training. We have industry-standard facilities and experienced teaching staff which provide the ideal complement to work-based learning.

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