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The Sheffield College

Joinery Apprentice Wins Award

Updated: 14/03/2016

A Sheffield College joinery apprentice has received an award this month for his outstanding commitment to learning and skills development.

Joinery Apprentice Wins Award

Pictured: Steve English, Managing Director of Birley Manufacturing, Russell Dean, Lecturer, The Sheffield College, and apprentice Ashley Walker

A Sheffield College joinery apprentice has received an award this month for his outstanding commitment to learning and skills development.

Ashley Walker has been presented with The Albert White Memorial Trophy by The Sheffield College for being an outstanding student after a unanimous vote.

Ashley is an apprentice at Birley Manufacturing in Sheffield, one of the UK's leading manufacturers for interior environments and rail carriage equipment.

He has trained in all areas of the manufacturing process including polishing, spraying, machining, assembly and despatch, and all sectors within the joinery department.

Ashley said: “I am delighted to have won this award. As an apprentice, I am able to earn whilst I learn, attaining good qualifications and gaining the practical experience at the same time. I believe in learning through experience, which my apprenticeship allows me to do.”

This week is National Apprenticeship Week, which showcases the benefits of apprenticeships to young people and businesses.

Led by the National Apprenticeship Service, from March 14th to 18th, it celebrates the positive impact that apprenticeships have on individuals, communities and the economy. Click here to find out more about apprenticeships.

Ashley is a highly proactive member of the business and a member of Birley Manufacturing’s employee forum called The Voice, which encourages ideas to be put forward to improve company performance.

Ashley has also been at the forefront of implementing a new training programme which includes a three month rotation for all apprentices. He has completed work on site, installing equipment for such customers as Barclays, NatWest and RBS, Morrisons and other high street retailers.

Ashley has won other awards during his apprenticeship. He was runner up in The Institute of Carpenters Competition, East Midlands Section, Merlane Trophy in June 2015.

Russell Dean, Lecturer, The Sheffield College, added: “Ashley is a model student. He achieved the highest results in the bench joinery exams at Level 2 and Level 3 and was the first student to complete his qualification. He is a credit to himself and Birley Manufacturing.”