Learners and tutors triumph at skills Oscars
13 July 2016
On 7 July learners and tutors from across the World were honoured for their outstanding achievements in professional and technical education at The Lion Awards, a prestigious ceremony hosted by City & Guilds.
The Lion awards often know as the ‘Oscars of skills education’ were held on Thursday evening in the stunning grounds of Capel Manor College in Enfield, north London, and showcased the very best in skills talent. The awards recognise excellent results and progression through learning as well as showcasing those who have overcome significant challenges to achieve their goals.
Kirstie Donnelly MBE, UK Managing Director at City & Guilds said: “The wealth of talent across this year’s nominees and winners makes me incredibly proud of the achievements and dedication they have all shown. The Lion Awards are a great opportunity to showcase this talent and all of us at City & Guilds are honoured to have been a part of their success.”
The City & Guild’s Lion Awards ceremony is one of the most prestigious events in the skills education calendar and is a culmination of the Medals for Excellence awards programme, which dates back more than 100 years.
This year more than 200 nominations were submitted across the five categories of Tutor of the Year,
Outstanding Achiever of the Year, Apprentice of the Year, FE Learner of the Year and Employee Learner of the Year.
This year’s winners are:
Tutor of the Year - Michael Felse, Professional Skills Academy, Salford
Michael has helped more than 200 health trainers achieve their qualifications. Michael’s health trainers meet the needs of over 1,000 clients in communities every year. He was awarded an Honorary Membership of City & Guilds for outstanding work that involved collaboration with Health and Cabinet Ministers. Michael himself is a health trainer, having delivered first line practical solutions to local people over a range of health issues. Although he’s 66, he still doesn’t think the job is done and will stay in his role until at least the age of 68 to motivate more individuals to reach their goals.
Outstanding Achiever of the Year - Gary Doyle, Newry & Kilkeel Institute of FE, Newry
Gary started his Level 2 diploma in Plumbing at Southern Regional College in September 2011. He was identified by his tutor as having excellent potential and was entered for the Northern Ireland Skillbuild competition final in May 2012, winning a gold medal and qualifying for the UK Skillbuild final in November 2012. Due to Gary's dedication and the skills developed as part of his City & Guilds course, he won a bronze medal at the competition, which placed him in the UK top 10 out a total of 22,000 possible plumbers. Gary repeated his successful run in the NI Competitions, winning a Silver medal in the UK Skillbuild final in November 2013. He was invited to join the UK squad for the World Skills competition and in May 2015 was selected to represent the United Kingdom at the world finals in Sao Paulo Brazil, where Gary went on to win the gold medal.
Apprentice of the Year - India Ratcliffe, North Lancs Training Group (NLTG), ACCRINGTON
Having taken a Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Upholstery and Soft Furnishings, India has achieved an extremely high level of skill to meet not only modern techniques but also to specialise in traditional techniques that are rare in today's upholstery trade. Within traditional restoration work she has developed her skills to produce bespoke items to the highest grade possible for quality and craft competency. As a female in a male orientated trade, India holds her own through the skills and crafts she has developed and recently achieved a highly commended award for Advanced Apprentice of the Year at the National Apprentice regional awards in Blackpool in October.
FE Learner of the Year - Daniel Kearney, Kerry ETB Training Centre, TRALEE
Dan started his Diploma in Media Techniques (Radio) in September 2014. Prior to this he had worked for 20 years in menswear before being made redundant, and had no experience in the radio industry. Despite his lack of experience, Dan took to the course very quickly. Dan completed an eight week in-company training with Radio Kerry where he worked as a producer on the weekend sports shows and within commercial production. Upon completing the course Dan produced his first independent documentary in collaboration with RTE Radio 1. This was very well received and was given a rating of 4.2 out of 5 by the RTE rating system.
Employee Learner of the Year - Alexander Fu Lam Chan, Professional Skills Academy, SALFORD
Alex, who was our youngest candidate in this category, immediately enrolled onto a NVQ level 3 Gym instructors and Personal trainer’s course after university and achieved subsequent qualifications in life coaching and diet and nutrition. His Level 3 Certificate for Health Trainers began in April 2015, after he gained valuable experience working as a gym supervisor and personal trainer. Alex not only achieved the Certificate but helped City & Guilds identify a new thematic community of potential candidates for the Level 3 qualification from physical activity trainers to sports-health therapists. He was our youngest candidate in this category.
International Centre of the year 2016 – the International Centre for Culinary Arts - Dubai
Since opening its doors in 2005, ICCA Dubai has trained over 3000 student chefs and maintains a record of 100% work placement for its graduates. The school has been featured amongst the top 10 Culinary Institutes in the World, it boasts state of the art facilities and has one of the largest purpose built training kitchens in the world.
ICCA Dubai has serviced over 86% of the hospitality brands in the UAE and works with many of the world’s leading luxury hotels, fine dining restaurants and food concepts, cruise lines and equipment manufacturers. As well as being a City & Guilds centre, the institution is also accredited by the World Association of Chefs Societies and the government of the UAE.
International centre of excellence (Africa) – Institute of culinary arts – South Africa
Based in Stellenbosch, South Africa, the Institute of Culinary Arts (ICA) has become a leading training school for world-class chefs. It is known for its intensive and thorough training, high standards and holistic approach to all things food-related. Its numerous accolades and awards of recognition are testimonials to ICA’s dedication and perseverance in the drive to uphold a simple philosophy of excellence in every aspect of culinary arts.
Working with leading national and international authorities, including City & Guilds, ICA continues to play a major role in the training and qualifying of top chefs who will succeed in a tough, yet highly rewarding industry whether graduates remain local or move on beyond South Africa’s borders.
International centre of excellence (Asia Pacific) – Weltec - New Zealand
The school offers a comprehensive range of education to over 11,000 students each year and prides itself on its industry relationships and the cutting edge technology incorporated into its programmes. As a result of the hands on training and the quality of the teaching, Weltec graduates are highly sought after and many of the students secure employment prior to the completion of their studies.
The School of Hospitality and Tourism campus, which delivers City & Guilds qualifications in conjunction with New Zealand certificates and diplomas, is recognised as the New Zealand centre for culinary and hospitality excellence.
International centre of excellence (South Asia) – Sri Lanka Telecom Training Centre
Sri Lanka Telecom Training Centre is the training arm of Sri Lanka Telecom, the national ICT solutions provider in Sri Lanka. The centre was originally set up to deliver training for the employees of Sri Lanka Telecom, but it has, over the years, opened its doors to all students and professionals, including employees of other telecom operators. Direct access to the latest technology and equipment, coupled with the expertise of the staff and the high quality of the programmes offered, have cemented the centre’s reputation as the country’s leading provider of telecommunications training.
Sri Lanka Telecom Training Centre has a longstanding relationship with City & Guilds, not the least because City & Guilds qualifications in Telecommunication System and Electrical and Electronic Engineering are accepted for employment at Sri Lanka Telecom.
International centre of excellence (Europe and the Caribbean) - Ballyfermot Training Centre
Based in Dublin, Ballyfermot Training Centre prides itself on the diversification of the City & Guilds qualifications they deliver and their constant drive to find new, innovative ways to expand their portfolio.
The centre prides itself in the learner experience it offers which is particularly important as the learners they are dealing with come from disadvantaged backgrounds and their views of education and training have often been tarnished by past experiences. This task is helped by their dedicated instructing staff, three of whom been awarded tutor Medal for Excellence for the last three years and one receiving the City & Guilds Presidents Award for the outstanding contribution he has made in his field.
International learner of the year – Sivasankaran Sarawanaraj (Sri Lanka)
Sivasankaran Sarawanaraj has been an inspiration to both students and tutors alike at Sri Lanka Telecom Training Centre, where he studied his Level 2 Diploma in Applied Telecommunication Systems. He has demonstrated exceptional skills and knowledge within his subject area, gaining very high results in the examinations. Having achieved a number of Distinctions confirming his outstanding knowledge, our winner didn’t stop there, he continued his studies and also supported other learners within the group to help them progress further. He showed extreme dedication to his course by travelling considerable distances each day. More remarkably, as a Tamil speaking student, with the rest of the group speaking Sinhala, our winner adapted to this environment quickly and after six months of study he was fluent in all three languages, English, Sinhala and Tamil. A remarkable achievement.
International tutor of the year – Thusitha Sameera Bandaranayake (Sri Lanka)
Thusitha Sameera Bandaranayake is incredibly inspirational to his students and colleagues alike. Coming from a rural village with minimal modern facilities, our winner uses his own life experiences to motivate his students to achieve the best. He is constantly pushing the boundaries on his own educational development and the delivery of his knowledge and skills to his students. His thirst for developing new techniques, and the ability to ‘think outside the box’ are what makes his lectures so successful.