Former apprentices from Derby City Council and Derby Homes had their hard work recognised at the National Apprenticeship Awards last week.

The National Apprenticeship Awards, now in its 16th Year, showcase the diverse range of sectors engaged with apprenticeships and the success stories of those who have undertaken apprenticeships.

Derby Homes’ apprentice, Neilesh Champaneri, was awarded the prestigious Apprenticeship Champion award after completing an Electrician Apprenticeship in 2017.

Neilesh joined Derby Homes in September 2014. After qualifying in May 2017, he got a permanent position with Derby Homes in the Voids Team, working on ensuring empty homes are ready to let to tenants.

He also works as a young apprentice ambassador, championing apprenticeships in Derby and beyond and getting involved in numerous projects with the Department for Education and Education, Skills and Funding Agency.

Through this work, Neilesh shares his own experience and dispels myths surrounding apprenticeships. He also mentors apprentices at Derby Homes that are training to be electricians to share his knowledge and encourage them.

Derby City Council apprentice, Andrew Tang, was highly commended in the category of Advanced Apprenticeship of the Year.

Andrew started his apprenticeship in L3 Business Administration with Derby City Council in September 2017. During his training, Andrew was responsible for the redevelopment, maintenance and promotion of the Derby Apprenticeship Forum. This included visiting schools to market apprenticeships to young people and leading on National Apprenticeship Week campaigns.

Since March 2019, Andrew has become full-time permanent employee at Derby City Council and is now working as an Employment and Skills Support Officer within the Economic Growth Service.

Councillor Evonne Williams, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said:

“It’s fantastic to see the hard work of Derby City Council’s and Derby Homes’ apprentices recognised and commended.

“Apprenticeships can be a brilliant opportunity. The combination of both work and study can be ideal for those looking to ease the transition between school and starting out into the world of work. Likewise, those who are looking for a change of career could find an apprenticeship the perfect way to continue earning while retraining in something else.

“Neilesh and Andrew are two great examples of how successful apprenticeships can be and the way to maximise this potential.”

Maria Murphy, Managing Director of Derby Homes said:

“I’m thrilled that Neilesh has received this award, given the effort and commitment he puts into his role. Derby is a thriving place for apprenticeships and it’s great that we have ambassadors who’ve been through the whole process so we can learn from them and who can pass their experience on to those starting out.”

There are a range of apprenticeship opportunities available with Derby City Council, from business administration to teaching assistant roles. The positions come with many benefits such as support from the Apprentice Hub (led by Andrew Tang) as well as greatly improved job prospects. Many former apprentices have gone on to gain successful employment within the City Council.

For more information on Derby City Council Apprenticeships and the range of opportunities available, visit our Apprenticeships webpage or contact the Apprenticeships Team.

For more about Derby Homes apprenticeships, go to the Derby Homes website. To apply for current vacancies visit the Find an Apprenticeship site.