Sandwell celebrates apprenticeship success

A person wearing glasses holding a framed certificate and smiling for the cameraSandwell Council is celebrating a double success for its apprenticeship programme as two awards have recently been won. One by apprentice Elliot McKenzie and one by the council itself for being large employer of the year. 

Elliot completed an apprenticeship as an education development officer at the Virtual School at Sandwell and has been named as the regional winner of the Advanced Apprentice of the Year category at the National Apprenticeship Awards 2022.

Elliot will now go on to represent the West Midlands at the National Awards at the end of November. 

Sandwell Council was named as winner of the large employer of the year category at the inaugural Ladder for the Black Country Apprenticeship Awards on Thursday 3 November at Grand Station in Wolverhampton.

The Ladder for the Black Country is a multi-organisation champion for apprenticeships in Sandwell, Dudley, Walsall and Wolverhampton. It works with employers and training providers, to promote apprenticeships and improve skills and employment opportunities across the region. 

Councillor Peter Hughes, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and growth, said: 

“It’s great that the hard work of both individuals and the council as whole is being recognised in this way. Apprenticeships are a vital tool in upskilling our residents to be able to secure better-paid, more fulfilling jobs and attracting inward business investment to the area. 

“The very best of luck to Elliot at the final later this month!”

Councillor Simon Hackett, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for children and education, added:

“This is a great example of how education and apprenticeships in particular can make a real change to young people’s life chances. In Sandwell, we believe that every child and young person should benefit from the best education possible.

“Apprenticeships not only give practical work experience, they also allow young people to learn and earn at the same time. We are committed to offering apprenticeship opportunities to our young people to give them the best start to their working lives.”

To find out how to take on an apprentice in your Sandwell business visit our Training and recruitment page

We can provide expert support all the way through the apprenticeship process, offering you and your apprentice everything from guidance on suitable qualification routes to sourcing appropriate training provision and supporting you to apply for various grants and incentives that are available.

Sandwell employers, you can also learn how your industry can help shape the workforce of the future, as well as how to nurture skilled, highly employable people within your business at a free networking breakfast taking place at West Bromwich Albion Football Club on Tuesday 13 December.

The ‘Shape the Workforce of the Future’ event was originally scheduled for September and postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

During the morning you’ll hear useful information about:

  • Taking on apprentices
  • Getting free training to upskill your team
  • The advantages of T levels
  • How your business can help to bridge the skills gap.

To find out more about the Sandwell Council event or to register your place visit: