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Abingdon and Witney College kick off National Apprenticeship Week with regional award win

Abingdon & Witney College have been recognised as the leading apprenticeship provider in the South of England at the inaugural Annual Apprenticeship Awards.

The awards took place at a reception at the House of Commons, sponsored by the chair of the education select committee Robert Halfon, kicking off the celebrations at the start of National Apprenticeship Week (NAW).

Support has flooded in since the announcement was made on Monday afternoon. Robert Courts, MP for Witney & West Oxon, was at the event to “celebrate all the great things that companies and apprentices are doing all over West Oxfordshire” and commended the College, whilst MP for Oxford West & Abingdon, Layla Moran also offered her congratulations on Twitter.

Shane Mann, the managing director of LSect, the group that runs both FE Week and the awards, said: “I would like to say a huge congratulations to our regional winners recognised today, as well as all the national finalists.”

“Our panel had a rigorous process for drawing up the shortlist, and identifying the best of the best. It was extremely difficult to do this because we had so many fantastic entrants.”

Yesterday also saw the College’s Deputy Principal, Jacqui Canton, shortlisted nationally for her individual contribution to the development of apprenticeships.

The award win automatically puts the College in contention for the National Apprenticeship Provider of the Year award, to be announced at the fourth Annual Apprenticeship Conference, held in Birmingham 21-23 March. Fellow finalists in this category include Walsall College, CITB, Bridgend College, and Gen2.

Di Batchelor, Principal at the College, said: “We can’t overstate the value of this kind of award and the recognition it brings to the College as a premier provider of high quality apprenticeships.”

“The team work tirelessly to ensure our apprentices and their employers are a good match, that businesses are getting the most from their Apprenticeship Levy, and continue to promote apprenticeship opportunities across Oxfordshire.”

“I just wish we could have brought all the team to celebrate with us today!”