PCI is celebrating two wins in the Aspire Blaenau Gwent Shared Apprenticeship Program Awards 2018.
PCI as an organization and PCI apprentice Macauley Webber have won the ‘Host Employer of the Year’ and ‘Aspire Blaenau Gwent Mentors Award 2018’ respectively at this year’s awards in Ebbw Vale, Wales.
PCI scooped the top prize at this year’s ceremony, having been named runner-up in 2017. The win highlights our continued commitment to nurturing and developing local talent at its Tredegar Center of Excellence.
PCI welcomed Macauley as an Information Technology apprentice in November 2016. In July 2018, Macauley was named winner of a prestigious Welsh skills competition – WorldSkills UK IT Software Solutions for Business.
Speaking on his placement with PCI, Macauley said: “I have gained so much practical experience and knowledge from my time at PCI’s Tredegar site. Initiatives like Aspire’s are really important; helping young people like me find job opportunities that can become careers.”
He added: “I believe the combination of education and practical experience through Aspire and PCI has accelerated my personal development and helped me establish essential skills for the future.”
Macauley’s mentor, Tredegar Site Systems Manager Colin Easter and Learning and Development Manager Jeff Lewis were also in attendance at the awards ceremony and collected the organization’s ‘Host Employer of the Year’ award. Colin commented: “We are delighted to have been recognized again for the work we do with our apprentices here at PCI. It’s fantastic to see all of our apprentices flourishing and we hope that their time with us provides them with the necessary practical and professional skills to carve out a successful career in their chosen field.”
The Shared Apprenticeship scheme in Blaenau Gwent began in 2015 as a strategic project to help to bridge the skills gap within manufacturing and engineering companies and improve business growth. The scheme also combats youth unemployment and provides aspirational career opportunities for people in the local area. The initiative is supported by a number of partners, including Ebbw Vale Enterprise Zone and Blaenau Gwent County Borough alongside host companies such as PCI.
PCI was one of the companies that helped to establish the scheme and is rightly proud of its long-standing commitment. Aldyth Smith, Supply Chain Director at PCI, said: “We are delighted that the scheme continues to go from strength to strength from its initiation four years ago, with 13 apprentices having completed their frameworks and now in employment. There are now 16 employers signed up to the scheme with more than 40 apprentices working and developing their skills in the local area“.