A trainer who has dedicated herself to changing the lives of her learners for more than 23 years was named Work-based Learning Tutor of the Year at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru final.
Ros Smith, lead motor vehicle tutor at ACT Training in Cardiff, collected the honour at the prestigious awards ceremony held at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport on Friday.
“It’s a massive personal achievement and great to be recognised for everything I have done in my career to date,” said Ros. “I enjoy working with learners and seeing their progression.
“I work with a great team and would like to progress further within the company. This award is the icing on the cake.”
Award sponsor Bal Birdi, national account manager for Pearson, congratulated Ros on her success. “We have been delighted to be premier sponsors for the NTfW Apprenticeship Awards and to present two outstanding awards for the Work-based Learning Assessor and Tutor of the Year,” he said. “Congratulations to all the winners for their hard work and commitment.”
Jointly organised by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), the coveted awards are sponsored by Pearson PLC and supported by media partner, Media Wales. The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.
Thirty star learners, employers and learning providers involved in the delivery of successful skills programmes across Wales were shortlisted for awards.
The awards are designed to showcase and celebrate the outstanding achievements of learners, employers, tutors and assessors who have excelled in contributing to the development of the Welsh Government’s Traineeships and Apprenticeship programmes.
Ros is part of the team that shapes and delivers Level 1 and Engagement Motor Vehicle Traineeships at 10 sites across South Wales, primarily in two fully-operational garages.
Although she has developed two streams of curriculum for Level 1 and Engagement, she will adapt, flex and make changes to ensure each young learner has the best experience.
Over the past two years, Ros has helped transform the Motor Vehicle Traineeship at ACT, helping 96% of learners progress to further learning or employment where nationally a 90% progression is classed as excellent.
In a predominantly male environment, she has become a great role model to young women entering the profession and to young women across the organisation.
Ros, who lives in Pontypridd, always goes the extra mile, completing training on perception, transactional analysis, psycho linguistics and emotional intelligence so she can better understand her learners. She has also built relationships with major garages and independents who now take on her learners.
Congratulating Ros on the award, Skills and Science Minister, Julie James said: “Each finalist has helped to set a gold standard in vocational training and this should be applauded.
“Apprenticeships and Traineeships are an essential ingredient of economic success and a vital tool in building a stronger, fairer and more equal Wales. The Welsh Government, with support from the European Social Fund, regards Apprenticeships and Traineeships as an excellent way to build a skilled and competitive workforce, address skills shortages and strengthen the Welsh economy.
“Increasing higher level skills and developing skills pathways that benefit the whole of Wales has never been more important and we are committed to continuing the good work already underway with businesses, training providers and individuals to achieve this.”
The other category finalist was Matthew Owen from Pontypridd who works for Aspiration Training Limited in Cardiff.