It's Nomination Time! With the Group's 'flagship event' - The Apprentice of the Year Awards - now just around the corner, Members are being urged to put forward as many candidates as possible to make 2015 our biggest and best production yet.
The Awards evening will again be held at The Oxford Thames Four Pillars Hotel, Sandford-on-Thames, on Thursday 22 October (6.45pm). But, before then, there are several other key dates for the diary - starting with the Nomination Deadline of Friday 28 August (5pm).
The adjudication process, including one-to-one on-site interviews and supporting evidence reviews, will commence on 14 September with invitations to all Member company apprentices, including those in their first year, to attend the event going out one week later (21 September).
Last year's Awards Evening, held in March, was a great success with more than 120 people present at The Oxford Thames Four Pillars Hotel. The winners on the night were Curtis Roca (Kingerlee Limited, Bench Joiner) - Merit Award; Michael Bone (Boshers [Cholsey] Limited, Carpenter) - NVQ Level 2; and Zak Lafford (Stuart Barr CDR Limited, Painter and Decorator) - NVQ Level 3.
The standard of entries was extremely high - and Zak went on to do himself, his company and the Group extremely proud by winning the Federation of Master Builders' regional title and then appearing as a finalist in the FMB Apprentice of the Year category.
Given the quality of apprentices within the Group at present, there is no reason to think that this year's standard will be anything but equally high.
Full details of the requirements for each category, together with nomination forms, have already gone out to all Members and Associate Members and further information regarding the Awards Evening itself will be released once finalised. As in previous years, nominations are also welcome from our local Colleges and training providers with regard to Apprentices from non-Member companies.
As for the prizes on offer, in addition to the customary engraved silverware there are significant monetary awards to be won (£100 each in respect of NVQ L3 & L2, £50 with the Merit Award and £25 for each nominee).
The 2014 event received much good publicity and meaningful media coverage can be anticipated again this year. With this in mind we are keen to hear from those who would like to take advantage by part-sponsoring the evening and having their own promotional exhibition stand at the function. A standard/nominal fee of £150.00 + VAT would apply.