Solent Conference Centre hosted the first Annual Apprenticeship Awards and Gala Dinner this month, which saw over 100 industry professionals attend from across Hampshire. The event was hosted in our awe-inspiring Spark Atrium, which was transformed for a 3 course dinner and drinks. The Apprenticeship Awards were conceived to celebrate excellence in our apprentices and employers’ achievements, and to mark National Apprenticeship Week, where a national spotlight falls on the opportunities provided by these exciting and innovative programmes.
Apprenticeships are a key area of focus for Solent, with apprenticeships now offered across all schools and in a range of subjects. These higher and degree apprenticeship programmes provide a fantastic way for both learners and companies to get ahead – with apprentices able to work, study and graduate debt-free, with a nationally-recognised university qualification; and helping employers attract motivated staff and train them in a way that maximises the impact they can make.
Knowing the important of such an event, the Events Team were delighted to host the event in one of our favourite spaces. Guests were greeted on arrival with a welcome drink and canapes, with our Hospitality team in action serving foie gras with pistachio and apricot and salmon and cream cheese blini. Once seated underneath the big red Pod, guests were welcomed by guest speaker Matt Le Tissier, who set the scene for a night of celebration, recognition and, of course food! Our Hospitality Team pulled out all the stops, serving such courses as roasted beetroot, goat’s cheese and walnut salad with a balsamic glaze, slow braised beef and a sumptuous chocolate truffle torte with a Seville orange centre and served with Chantilly cream.
The night saw some fantastic nominees and some delighted winners across all schools. We also saw Andy and Jamie scope the award for outstanding apprentice of the year.
- School of Media Arts & Technology Apprentice of the year 2020 – Ian Nash
- School of Business Law & Communication Apprentice of the year 2020 – Isabel Cherrett
- School of Sport, Health & Social Sciences Apprentice of the year 2020 – Patricia Cox
- School of Art, Design & Fashion Apprentice of the year 2020 – Jonathan Reidy
- Warsash School of Maritime Science & Engineering Apprentice of the year 2020 – Samuel Gale
- Solent University Outstanding Apprentice of the Year 2020 – Andy Thornton and Jamie Walker
The night was topped off with a live band and networking under the big red Pod. Here’s to next year.