Thursday 08th March 2018 saw an array of apprentice talent recognised for their outstanding contribution to the hospitality sector. Hosted at the glamorous The Ritz London, six apprentices from across the hospitality sector were awarded top accolades for their commitment to lifelong learning and their achievements over the past 12 – 18 months.
Now in it’s third year, this year the Purple Umbrella Awards extended award categories to include not only the prestigious Purple Umbrella award, but also to recognise the wealth of talent across all levels of apprenticeship; including Chef apprentice of the year, Hospitality Team Member apprentice of the year, Hospitality Supervisor apprentice of the year, Foundation Degree apprentice of the year and Alumni apprentice of the year. Awards were judged by a panel of high-profile industry experts, including Chris Moore CEO of The Clink Charity, James Stag, Deputy Editor from the Caterer and Ciarán Fahy, CEO of The Ritz London, who also handed out awards on the night.
However, there could only be one winner of the top prize and this year Harry Sellick, Footman at The Goring Hotel was awarded the Purple Umbrella award and named the hospitality apprentice of the year. Described by Jeremy Goring, CEO of The Goring as a “truly amazing young gentleman who we are all very proud of”; Harry was chosen for his confidence, self-drive and impact made upon the wider business.
Adele Oxberry, Founder and Managing Director of Umbrella Training comments: “These awards are our opportunity to recognise the hard work and commitment our apprentices give to our sector. We have an incredibly high calibre of talent entering our sector through apprenticeship programmes and it’s only right that these brilliant young people are celebrated in this way.”
The Purple Umbrella awards followed the launch of an awareness campaign by Umbrella Training, in conjunction with several employer partners, to promote hospitality apprenticeships as an attractive career option for all. With the hospitality sector requiring 993,000 people by 2022 (People 1st), apprenticeships provide a very real opportunity to close the skills gaps the industry faces, while offering people a career for life. To kick-start the campaign, an apprenticeship branded Routemaster Bus toured schools across the South East and London; taking hospitality employers to young people where they promoted the benefits of a career in the hospitality sector. In addition, a virtual reality hotel was available to offer students the opportunity to experience working in a luxury hotel in real time.
Other winners on the evening were awarded to:
- Chef Apprentice of the year – Monika Dajda from the Georgian House Hotel,
- Hospitality Team Member Apprentice of the year – Kamelja Aliaj from Red Carnations Hotels
- Hospitality Supervisor Apprentice of the year – Tatjana Jasinska from The Goring
- Foundation Degree Apprentice of the year – Inga Zubaviciute from the Royal Lancaster London
- Alumni Apprentice of the year – Liam Ferguson from the Hyatt Regency – The Churchill
Highly commended awards were also handed to:
- Jean Louis Gbezo – Alumni apprentice (Sarova Hotels)
- Barbara Ziobrowski – Hospitality Supervisor (Red Carnation Hotels).
Adele Oxberry adds: “National Apprenticeship Week provides employers with the perfect opportunity to get out there and talk about apprenticeships, the sector and the great experiences a career in hospitality can offer. By bringing together employers from across the industry, we’ve been able to create a collaborative approach to promoting our sector and educate not just young people, but teachers and parents, of the opportunities we can provide through apprenticeship programmes. This is just the start, however, and we look forward to expanding our partnerships with employers and putting hospitality apprenticeships on the map.”