Bolton graduate is nation's top higher apprentice

Posted on Tuesday 11th December 2012

Beth collects award at national ceremony

University of Bolton graduate, Beth Sherbourne, has been named the UK’s top apprentice at a prestigious awards ceremony.

Beth has won the Virgin Media Higher Apprentice of the Year 2012 at the National Apprenticeship Awards (NAS) held at the Skills Show in Birmingham’s NEC.

Beth is currently a Senior Procurement Officer at missile manufacturer, MBDA. She joined the company through its apprenticeship scheme and during her apprenticeship Beth studied part-time at the University of Bolton for her degree in Business Management, graduating in the summer.

She said: ‘It feels amazing to be recognised at such a high level and I am delighted that all my hard work has paid off. I am truly overwhelmed to have won the award.’

In her role with MBDA Beth is in charge of a multi-million pound budget and purchases equipment for MBDA’s missile systems.

Beth says her time at Bolton was important and played a big part in her success: ‘Studying part-time at the University definitely helped me during my apprenticeship. I found it useful as I could relate academic theory to the work and job I was completing.’

Beth has been a star student, graduating with highest marks in her class and picking up a coveted Governors’ Award at graduation.

She believes these achievements have played their part in her latest award. She said: ‘I am sure that being able to state that I was awarded a First Class Honours degree and was presented with a Governors' Award from the University for Significant Academic Achievement highlighted my work ethic and passion to the NAS judging panel.’

Studying at university and working on the MBDA Apprenticeship Scheme at the same time took long-term commitment and focus. She added: ‘I found studying part-time whilst working full-time difficult due to time constraints and I often had to work nonstop over the weekends to ensure I completed all of my work to a high standard.’

Now the sacrifices are paying off and she is transferring the skills learnt at the University to her every day job: ‘The transition has been smooth. I found that the majority of what I learnt within university I could directly apply within the workplace. I could relate the theory of business to my work environment allowing me to suggest improvements and apply best practise.’

Susan Rabbit is the Programme Leader for all the University’s Business undergraduate courses and was also one of Beth's tutors. She said: ‘I am delighted that Beth has won another apprenticeship award and would like to take this opportunity to congratulate her. She has been an outstanding student and a pleasure to teach. I'd like to wish her continued success for the future.’