QinetiQ reaches final in the search for apprentice team of the year

11 Apr 2014

QinetiQ has been announced as one of the eight finalists of the Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2014, having finished ahead of all other teams in the South of England regional heats.

After three months of competition between over 100 teams from the country’s top Apprenticeship employers, training providers and colleges in the search for the apprentice team of the year, the finalists were announced at a House of Commons reception.

The Unit

As part of the competition, the QinetiQ apprentice team, based at the QinetiQ Apprentice Training School at MOD Boscombe Down, organised a community project renovating 'The Unit', a local hub for young people. Renovation included giving the hub a café look and feel for young people to meet and relax in, as well as find out about opportunities in the local area. As well as their community projects, the team also conducted nine school visits to talk about the benefits of Apprenticeships.

QinetiQ and the other finalists will continue to raise awareness of Apprenticeships and conduct fundraising until the 9th June when the Challenge will culminate in a series of team building, logistical and physical challenges at Brathay Trust’s Windermere headquarters. The apprentice team of the year will be announced on the 11th June.

On getting through to the final, Matthew Crew, Aeronautical Engineering Apprentice at QinetiQ, said: “We are really pleased that the judges have put us through to the final and recognised our hard work. In these past three months we have been able to make a positive impact on our local community whilst also becoming closer as a team. We are looking forward to the final to prove that we are the country’s best apprentice team.”

Melanie Jackson, Head of QinetiQ Apprentice Training School, said: “We are extremely proud of the QinetiQ Brathay Challenge Apprentice Team and getting through to the final is an outstanding achievement. QinetiQ rely entirely on the expertise and skills of our people and our apprentices are a vital part of this. The Brathay Challenge is a fantastic opportunity to gain a variety of new skills, providing our apprentices with very valuable experiences and we wish the team the best of luck for the finals in June.”

Supported by the National Apprenticeship Service, the Brathay Apprentice Challenge offers an enhanced Apprenticeship experience for competing apprentices and tests non-technical work skills such as team building and communication.

Godfrey Owen, Chief Executive of organisers, Brathay Trust, said: “Employers are really starting to see the value of enhanced Apprenticeships and this year has reflected that. Employers are now realising that the skills apprentices learn while taking part in the Challenge benefit their company as well as their apprentices. With over 100 teams and 1000 individual apprentices competing, the competition was really tough this year and once again the quality of submissions has surpassed our expectations. We are looking forward to the final stage of the Challenge and welcoming the finalists to Brathay in June.”

There are eight finalist teams, including QinetiQ

Barrow Engineering Projects – Oxley Group
British Airways High Flyers
e2v Technologies
Queen Elizabeth Hospital
South Worcestershire College
Virgin Media

The Challenge judges included Helen Taylor from Mercedes Benz, Lisa Gallagher from Department for Education, Lisa Dunbar from Bedford Hospital as well as representatives from Brathay Trust and the National Apprenticeship Service.

Notes to Editors:

The Brathay Apprentice Challenge
The Brathay Apprentice Challenge (#BAC14) is the search to find the ‘apprentice team of the year’, supported by the National Apprenticeship Service. To win the Brathay Apprentice Challenge, teams of nine apprentices have to prove their team building, leadership, logistical and communications abilities.

Now in its third year, the Brathay Apprentice Challenge opens for formal nominations at the Skills Show in November 2013. The closing date for nominations is Friday 13th December 2013. Regional heats, consisting of awareness raising activity and a community project take place January through to March 2014. Eight finalist teams will be announced in April and will battle it out to be crowned ‘apprentice team of the year’.

The eight teams take part in further awareness raising activity and fundraising activity with the Challenge culminating in a logistical and team building adventure finale at the Brathay Trust’s Windermere headquarters from 9th to 11th June 2014.

National Apprenticeship Service
The National Apprenticeship Service enables our nation to generate a more highly skilled workforce. Through Apprenticeships, skills competitions and awards, which create opportunity, support development and showcase excellence. The endeavours enable them to:

Transform the lives of our people.
Stimulate growth and strengthen our economy.
Instil pride in the skilled people of our nation.

Visit apprenticeships.org.uk for more information.

Brathay Trust
Brathay Trust is a charity with the mission to improve the life chances of children and young people. They do this by inspiring them to engage positively in their communities.

They also create highly successful professional development programmes and, through rigorous evaluation, they can ensure a return on investment for each and every client.

About QinetiQ
QinetiQ is the founding member of the 5% Club, a campaign to get the UK’s public and private companies to commit to raising the number of apprentices, sponsored students and graduates on formal programmes to 5% of their total workforce within the next five years. The aim of the campaign is to tackle both the chronic skills shortage and youth unemployment in Britain and help the country remain at the forefront of innovation. It also asks member to publicly report their progress in their Annual Report.

A FTSE250 company, QinetiQ uses its domain knowledge to provide technical support and know-how to customers in the global aerospace, defence and security markets. QinetiQ's unique position enables it to be a trusted partner to government organisations, including defence departments, intelligence services and security agencies. 

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For further information, please contact QinetiQ Press Office
Tel: +44 (0) 1252 39 3500
Email: PressOffice@QinetiQ.com
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QinetiQ reaches final in the search for apprentice team of the year