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Derwent training association proud of team’s achievement at finals of competition to find apprentice team of the year

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Nine apprentices from 5 different Yorkshire employers, who attend Derwent Training Association Malton, reached the Finals of the Brathay Apprentice Challenge, won the Whaler Time Trail element and finished 5th overall in the search for the Apprentice Team of the Year 2017.

Following a testing five-month Challenge, the team from Derwent Training Association, calling themselves NYEngApps, were competing against seven of the country’s leading apprentice employers.

The Brathay Apprentice Challenge, the search for the apprentice team of the year, is supported by the National Apprenticeship Service. In 2017, teams reached over 70,000 young people to raise awareness of the benefits of apprenticeships and recruited over 500 new employers interested in offering apprenticeships. 

The Derwent Training Association team finished close behind IBM in fourth, JCB in third, Nottingham City Homes in second and overall winners GSK Ulverston. Teams from Redrow Homes, Severn Trent Water and WSP also competed in the National Finals.

The Whaler Time Trail element, which the team won, involved the apprentices rowing across Lake Windermere for over an hour, earning time bonus points along the way by solving challenges. The team prepared for the race by developing multiple plans depending on conditions and currents on Windermere.

The total of eight National Finalists were selected from 75 teams and 650 apprentices who entered the Challenge. Since January, the teams have worked hard to spread the word about apprenticeships and in total have visited more than 555 schools, careers fairs and youth groups to encourage young people to consider an apprenticeship.  The apprentice teams have also reached out to their local communities and potential apprentice employers and delivered 44 community projects to benefit young people. The Derwent Training Association team designed, resourced, manufactured and delivered a practice cricket net for the local Westow Cricket Club to encourage skill development of the young cricketers.

Jordan Layne, a mechanical engineering apprentice at Portakabin in York, said:

“We’re ecstatic to have moved from 7th in the competition before the finals to 5th overall. It’s been a fantastic achievement for me and everyone on the team. We’ve built friendship between the team and gained more confidence to work both by ourselves and in a group.”

Bob Watmore, Training and Assessment Manager at Derwent Training Association, congratulated the apprentices and said: 

“I’m so proud that a team drawn from five different employers in our Yorkshire region competed so well against some of the biggest organisations in the country. It’s been a pleasure to see how the team developed and seeing how the skills they have learned through the Challenge are already benefiting their employers.”

Sue Husband, Director of the National Apprenticeship Service, said:

“Congratulations to all of the teams that have taken part in this year’s Challenge. Together they have shown the genuine difference an apprenticeship can make. The new skills and the new experiences these apprentices have gained in the Challenge will add to the opportunity apprenticeships provide to earn while you learn, as well as helping the employer grow and increase its productivity.

“The hard work the teams have put into the Challenge has made real differences to their communities, the next generation of young people thinking about their careers and encouraged more employers to take on apprentices. 

“They are great ambassadors for apprenticeships.”

Godfrey Owen, Chief Executive of Brathay Trust, said:

“All the teams are great examples of how offering an enhanced apprenticeship experience can benefit both apprentices and their organisations. All of the apprentices that have taken part this year have gained teambuilding, leadership, logistical and communication skills.  It has been a pleasure to host the Brathay Apprentice Challenge and watch these apprentices develop into outstanding employees.”

For more information on the Brathay Apprentice Challenge and to see a list of all teams entered visit brathay.com/challenge.