News story: Who will be crowned the Rising Star of 2018?


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Anticipation is growing ahead of this year’s national ceremony, with over 7,000 votes cast for the winner of the new Lloyds Banking Group sponsored ‘Rising Star’ category in the National Apprenticeship Awards 2018.

Voting closed on 17 October and for now, the 9 regional ‘Rising Star’ winners will have to wait until November to find out who will be crowned the national winner at the national ceremony in London. The award will be presented alongside 8 other National Apprenticeship Awards 2018 category winners and highly commended employers, apprentices and individuals.

The National Apprenticeship Awards, now in their 15th year, showcase the diverse and growing range of sectors engaged with apprenticeships, whilst celebrating outstanding apprentices, employers and individuals who go above and beyond to champion apprenticeships across England. In addition to the new for 2018 ‘Rising Star’ category, another new category, the PeoplePlus Award for Recruitment Excellence, will also be presented.

And with national judging now having taken place, a full list of national finalists in each category can be announced:

Lloyds Banking Group Award for Rising Star of the year national finalists:

  • Shivam Radia, East Midlands
  • Aleksandra Burzec, East of England
  • Thomas Mynott, London
  • Jenny Jones, North East
  • Joseph Buck, North West
  • Aimee Wilkinson, South East
  • Henry Crosby, South West
  • Sam Brown, West Midlands
  • Hannah Turner, Yorkshire and the Humber
The British Army Award for Intermediate apprentice of the year national finalists:

  • Amelia Wayne, East Midlands
  • Chloe Ludkin, East of England
  • Danielle Lebby, London
  • Niall Bennison, North East
  • Leigh Carter, North West
  • Natalie Annalls, South East
  • Vikas Khan, South West
  • Bethany Geddes, West Midlands
  • Muhammad Uddin, Yorkshire and the Humber
The Rolls Royce Award for Advanced apprentice of the year national finalists:

  • Elliott Walker, East Midlands
  • Jade Smith, East of England
  • Jessica Eley, London
  • Alexandra Turner-Davis, North East
  • Lucas Benson, North West
  • Muhammad Khan, South East
  • Michael Baller, South West
  • Daniel Millington, West Midlands
  • Matthew Shillings, Yorkshire and the Humber
The Nuclear Decommissioning Site Licence Companies Award for higher or degree apprentice of the year national finalists:

  • Kathryn Monkcom, East Midlands
  • Georgia Cresswell, East of England
  • Kate Self, London
  • Joe Powell, North East
  • Jordan Coulton, North West
  • Alisha Fordham, South East
  • Luke Hiller, South West
  • Michelle Blackwell, West Midlands
  • Oliver Marsh, Yorkshire and the Humber
The Royal Air Force Award for Apprenticeship Champion of the year national finalists:

  • Mark Lawson, East Midlands
  • Jordan Nicholas, London
  • David Thompson, North East
  • Natalie White, North West
  • Darren Ellis, South East
  • Gary Shaw, South West
  • Susan Gough, West Midlands
The BAE Systems Award for SME Employer of the year (for organisations with 1 to 249 employees) national finalists:

  • Edward Cooper Young Chartered Surveyors (ECY)
  • Stainless Metalcraft (Chatteris) Ltd
  • Troup Bywaters + Anders
  • Lotte Chemical UK Ltd
  • Aptus Utilities Ltd
  • Invotra
  • GoSkydive
  • Furrows Group
  • North York Moors National Park Authority
The Royal Navy Award for Large Employer of the year (for organisations with 250 to 4,999 employees) national finalists:

  • Uniper
  • Bespak Europe Ltd
  • Channel 4 Television
  • Hays Travel
  • WEC Group Limited
  • MBDA
  • United Kingdom Hydrographic Office
  • KMF Precision Sheet Metal Limited
  • Syngenta
The Centrica Award for Macro Employer of the year (5,000+ employees) national finalists:

  • Santander UK
  • Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Engie
  • Lookers plc
  • Rochdale Council
  • Caring Homes Group
  • BAE Systems plc
  • Marston’s PLC
  • Lloyds Banking Group
The PeoplePlus Award for Recruitment Excellence national finalists:

  • Santander UK
  • Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Rochdale Council
  • WSP
  • Northumberland County Council
  • Caring Homes Group
  • BAE Systems plc
  • KMF Precision Sheet Metal Limited
  • Lloyds Banking Group

Anne Milton, Minister of State for Apprenticeships and Skills said:

Well done and huge congratulations to all the national finalists! And what a range of sectors you represent - and at all levels.

I’ve met apprentices and employers up and down the country, and one thing they all share is passion for apprenticeships and the opportunities they create to change lives. To make sure as many people as possible are aware of apprenticeships and the change they can bring, we need people like you. You should be very proud of your achievement!

I wish them all the best of luck for the award ceremony on 28 November.

Keith Smith, Director, Apprenticeships, Education and Skills Funding Agency concluded:

It is fascinating to see so many apprentices, individuals and employers from such an array of sectors make it through to the final stage of the National Apprenticeship Awards 2018.

The new categories have refreshed the awards and it’s been exciting to go out with a public vote to help select the Rising Star category winner; and also great to see new employers entering the awards and being recognised for their diverse approaches in the recruitment of apprentices.

I want to personally congratulate all finalists for making it through to the national stage and by getting this far it really does show the depth and strength of apprenticeships in England at this time.

You can keep up to date with apprenticeships news, including information on the National Apprenticeship Awards by following @Apprenticeships on Twitter and the National Apprenticeship Service on LinkedIn.

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