GB Lions player Cameron Parker honours west London Achievers

Employer partnerships and work-related skills training successes were recognised at an awards ceremony at The Beck Theatre in Hayes. Uxbridge College’s Annual Awards returned to the stage, with motivational speaker Cameron Parker sharing his inspirational story and presenting prizes.

Among the employer award winners were:

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (representatives pictured): The Work Experience Employer Award – provided placements for Health and Social care, science, and catering students, throughout the year. Created a strong induction programme, and got colleagues on board so students could spend time working in their three hospitals, including during the third wave of the pandemic.

Charlie Bighams Ltd : Apprentice employer – their apprentice is on a Mechatronics training at Level 3, which entails maintenance on mechanical and electronic equipment, in this case the company’s Park Royal kitchens. Extremely supportive to their apprentice who they give very useful feedback on.

Apprentice awards went to:

Alana-May Brannan: Intermediate Apprentice Award -West London Community College Colne Lodge. Works supporting autistic adults as a Life Skills Practitioner. Quickly established herself in her role supporting autistic adults, soon becoming a very strong team member and developing high care standards. Now progressing to the Advanced Apprenticeship at Level 3.

Siobhan Tyler McNally: Advanced Apprentice Award – Savay Dental Care in Harefield. Confident, polite and friendly, with a positive attitude, she has shown a high level of commitment and responsibility. Throughout her Dental Nursing Apprenticeship, she has excelled both in the workplace and in class, helping other learners, as well as fulfilling her own potential, and continuously received positive feedback at work.

Jack Parr-McKivett: Star Award winner for Creative Arts – an outstanding Art & Design-Graphic student who surpassed requirements in his own work, and also supported classmates while they were isolating, with messaging and instructions from lessons. His design won the best logo for Hillingdon Chamber of Commerce and this is now being featured in its social media campaigns. Jack has progressed to New Bucks University on to a BA Hons in Graphic Design, and as the awards ceremony took place on his first day at university, his award was collected on his behalf by Neil Brayshaw, HCUC Interim Director for Employment and Skills. HCUC is the umbrella group for Uxbridge College and Harrow College.

Professional Cookery student Megan Hollyoak was also chosen for an award – she received excellent feedback from restauranteurs Corbin and King, who run establishments including The Wolseley and The Delaunay. Megan, who took extra units in addition to her Level 1 qualification,received the Star Award for Hair, Beauty, Hospitality, and Early Years. Head Chef Christian Turner described her as “a pleasure to have in our kitchen” and praised her understanding of cooking, food and the ethics of the kitchen, as well as her positive attitude.

Performing arts students from Uxbridge College’s Praxis theatre at the Hayes campus also played a key part, kicking off the evening with performances of You’ll reach up and you’ll rise again and You Will Be Found by music and acting students, and a dance performance of Another Day of Sun.

Cameron talked about his life, including playing American Football with the GB Lions, becoming the first university graduate in his family, and using his dyslexia and ADD to his advantage.

His story resonated with award winners – chosen from the college’s 8,000 part-time and full-time students – and their friends and family who came with them to the celebrations.

Dr Darrell DeSouza, Group Principal and CEO of HCUC, the merged college group for Uxbridge College and Harrow College, said: “This event is a fantastic opportunity to step back and see just how much our students achieve in so many ways during their time at college. Whilst Uxbridge College and Harrow College both stand in their own right as colleges, our shared goals and partnership opportunities have a value for everyone.
“I’m also very pleased to honour our employer partners from across west London, who not only support thousands of learners across the college, but join in the vital dialogue about how best to fit further and Higher level training to business needs.

Dylan McTaggart, HCUC Deputy CEO and Principal of Uxbridge College: “It’s been really inspiring to see so many of our students and their families once again celebrating their achievements – especially when they’ve all had so much to contend with during the pandemic.
“We’ve had some particularly impressive young people and adult learners this year, and I have no doubt they will all continue to make fantastic contributions to their communities and the world of work, as well as fulfilling their own dreams.
“Every single student is an individual, and Uxbridge College is committed to helping them find the right path to their own style of success – be it achieving a university place, getting permanent work through an apprenticeship, or gaining enough skills to join the next level of study.”