Finalists for the National Apprenticeship Awards next month have been announced.
Neil Cain, Michael Motley and Joshua Uwadiae make up the three-strong field for apprenticeship champion of the year and were among the national finalists.
All three had already been crowned regional winner, with Neil representing East of England, Michael representing the East Midlands and Joshua representing London.
Neil Cain, aged 51, is operations director at John O’Conner (Grounds Maintenance) Ltd, based in Welwyn, Hertfordshire.
He began his career in horticulture 30 years ago with an apprenticeship at Sunderland Parks Department, and developed John O’Conner’s apprenticeship scheme.
Michael Motley, 61, managing director at TQ Training, in Braunston Daventry, Northamptonshire, left school at 16 to join the steel works in Scunthorpe as an apprentice metallurgical technician.
He introduced the first apprenticeship scheme in the army, and has also led and promoted apprenticeship programmes for FE and independent learning providers.
Joshua Uwadiae, 22, was expelled from school at the age of 15, and began an IT systems and networking apprenticeship with eCourier at the age of 18.
After completing his apprenticeship, he continued working at eCourier and was promoted to IT manager. He now runs his own tech company.
The winner will be announced at the national awards ceremony on January 26, at Grosvenor House, London.
Last year’s apprenticeship champion of the year was bricklayer and 2013 WorldSkills gold medal winner Ashley Terron.
The national winners of the advanced, higher and intermediate apprentice of the year awards will also be announced at the ceremony, along with apprenticeship employers of the year.
Here are all the finalists:
The EAL Award for Advanced Apprentice of the Year
April Bell, Monica F Hewitt
Lauren Tiller, BT
Joshua White, IBM United Kingdom Ltd
The Nuclear Decommissioning Site Licence Companies Award for the Higher Apprentice of the Year
Jade Aspinall, MBDA UK Ltd
Sean Norgate, BT
Joanne Sharples, BAE Systems
The McDonald’s Award for the Intermediate Apprentice of the Year
Ashleigh Everett, 20, Boldero and Filby
Kathleen Sandford, 20, The Community Housing Group
Freya Ward, 22, Napier Partnership Ltd
The City & Guilds award for the Apprenticeship Champion of the Year Award
Neil Cain, 51, John O’Conner (Grounds Maintenance) Ltd
Michael Motley, 61, TQ Training
Joshua Uwadiae, 22, Superlative Youth
The Unilever Award for Small Employer of the Year
Beauty Oasis Spa
The E.ON in partnership with the National Skills Academy for Power Award for Medium Employer of the Year
Genix Healthcare Ltd
Troup Bywaters + Anders
The BAE Systems Award for Large Employer of the Year
Clarkson Evans Ltd
Leibherr GB Ltd
The BT Award for Macro Employer of the Year
BAE Systems plc
Lloyds Banking Group
The EDF Energy Award for Newcomer SME of the Year
The Rolls-Royce Award for Newcomer Large Employer of the Year
Be Wiser Insurance
UBS Wealth Management