Heage apprentice scoops top award

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High-flying youngsters have been rewarded for their efforts at a Derby College awards night.

A number of local students were among the winners and highly commended at the ‘Peak Awards’ attended by more than 200 people.

The awards celebrate the achievements of students across the organisation and were presented by representatives of local businesses who had sponsored individual awards.

The pre-16 award was presented to Matthew Woodhouse, 16, who is a year 11 pupil at John Flamsteed Community School and attends the Construction Academy one day a week at the Ilkeston campus for his success in a number of skills competitions.

Apprentice of the Year was awarded to Matthew Hitchcock, 19, from West Hallam. After achieving good GCSE grades at Kirk Hallam School, he secured a quantity surveyor apprenticeship with Keyclad in Heage, part of the Bowmer and Kirkland Group.

He has attended Derby College on day release and achieved triple distinctions in the BTEC extended diploma in construction and the built environment – which is a full time qualification - with his sights set on gaining a degree in quantity surveying part time at Nottingham Trent University.

Hair and media make up student Charlotte Hall, 19, from Borrowash, won the Entrepreneurship Award in recognition of her work, 
supported by the Prince’s Trust, to set up her own 
business – Faces by Charlotte. The Media and Arts Award went to 18-year-old Abraham Steward from Stanley Common, who has completed a range of work experience placements and is planning to study architecture at the University of Sheffield.

Highly commended in the Plant Science Award was 
agriculture student Karla 
Littlefair, 16, from Ilkeston, in recognition of her hard work and going the extra mile from tractor driving skills to volunteering for the evening lambing sessions at 
Broomfield Hall’s farm in Morley.

Derby College chief executive Mandie Stravino said: “The Peak Awards come at the end of another very successful academic year for Derby College.

“We have built even 
further on the excellent work highlighted by Ofsted who, in 2016 rightly judged us as being a ‘Good’ college with ‘Outstanding’ f
eatures. This praise was further cemented by the college featuring as a best practice case study in Ofsted Chief Inspector’s Annual Report for our partnership working with employers.

“Highlights in the past year have ranged from our Little Explorers day nursery achieving an ‘Outstanding’ grade by Ofsted to the
 outstanding success of one of our former students, Adam Peaty, in the pool at Rio 2016.

“The Peak Awards is the highlight of the college 
calendar and I want to thank everyone who has helped to support these and all of our students to achieve their 
potential and set them on the path to their future careers.”