Meet #OAAwards2021 Apprenticeship Champion of the Year Becky Elsworth

The Oxfordshire Apprenticeship Awards recognised the best talent in the county with a special live streamed event on Thursday 6th May 2021.

The Apprenticeship Champion Award was a new award for 2021, introduced to recognise individuals who have gone the extra mile to promote Apprenticeships and/or enable Apprenticeships to continue during the exceptional circumstances resulting from COVID-19.

The winner was Becky Elsworth, Apprenticeship Manager at Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust. Becky has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to promote and develop Apprenticeships across her organisation and beyond. She has a very ‘hands on’ approach and is actively involved in all of the Apprenticeships that Oxford Health deliver. Throughout the pandemic she has supported her team who have continued to deliver Apprenticeships and always finds time to support and encourage the people around her, despite her very heavy work schedule.

Becky has also been fundamental in ensuring that new Apprenticeship programmes - Nurse Cadet and the first Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner - were developed, approved, recruited to and delivered during the COVID-19 pandemic. In additon to this, more than 100 staff took and passed functional skills exams and more than 60 staff become registered practitioners during the pandemic.

The Apprenticeship Champion Award was kindly sponsored by Oxford Brookes University. Apprenticeships Coordinator at Bookes, Nita Lad, carried out the judging for this incredibly strong category. Nita said: "Becky’s energy, enthusiasm and motivation are exceptional and she fills people with excitement and energy about apprenticeships. Her staff say nothing is ever too much for her. She is constantly looking for opportunities to expand the portfolio of apprenticeships on offer in Oxfordshire. Despite her very heavy work schedule Becky always finds time to support and encourage the people around her."

"Becky has been instrumental to people being able to access apprenticeships. She has given career advice to both learners and managers so that they know what apprenticeship would be right for them and what the next steps are. She ensured over 60 staff become registered practitioners." 

"Becky’s enthusiasm is infectious and she recalls stories of people who thought they could not achieve any more in their job or having been told they were ‘stupid’ at school but now have successful careers. She is an inspiration to all."

Becky said: "I am overjoyed to receive this reward and truly humbled to be chosen as the winner and to be nominated by my team. I am proud to call myself the manager of such a hardworking and determined team. The dedication of each individual Apprentice allows us to continue to grow and offer more potential career opportunities to others."

See our article for details of all the winning and highly commended entrants.