A day of celebration for Vocational Qualifications A day of celebration for Vocational Qualifications

Acorn, one of the UK's leading recruitment and training agencies, proudly supports VQ Day which takes place every year.  

Vocational Qualification Day is a national celebration of vocational qualifications for students, teachers and employers. It is a national celebration and recognises the millions of talented and skilled people throughout the UK who are awarded Vocational Qualifications.

Acorn provides training, learning and development solutions to 1,000+ people every month. Acorn designs, delivers and evaluates a comprehensive range of training and development solutions for both businesses and individuals.

Sarah John, Commercial Director of Acorn’s Training Division said: “We are delighted that not only can we can provide vocational qualifications to businesses across the UK to improve their employees’ skills, but we have so many of our own staff on such training who are committed to developing their roles. It’s great to celebrate VQ day to recognise such talent.”

VQ Day 2015 

Wednesday the 10th of June 2015 saw Acorn support VQ Day.

At Acorn, we always take pride in recognising learners' achievements, and as a result submitted five nominations for the Wales 2015 VQ Learner of the Year Award. 

The Wales VQ Learner of the Year Award recongises learners who demonstrate progression and excellent invocational studies - two of our nominees were shortlisted as finalists

Meet Acorn's 2015 finalists: 

James Pepper, Vista Retail Support 

James, Technical Services Director at Vista Retail Support, has been developing his skills with Acorn since 2005 when he first started honing his management skills. Over the last ten years, James has achieved a NVQ Level 4 in Management and secured 20 HE credits with Cardiff Metropolitan University, before starting a Higher Apprenticeship in Management combined with a Foundation Degree in Applied Professional Practice.

Since taking conscious steps to develop his skills, James’ career with Vista Retail Support has rapidly progressed from Repair Centre Manager to Operations Manager, to Operations Director before being appointed as Technical Services Director. Since 1998, James has become an integral part of the company, helping it grow from a Micro Business to a company, which today, employs approximately 200 people.

During his career, James has played a significant role at Vista, undertaking leadership of operations and project services, including the transition of new customers and pricing, and the development of relationships with manufacturers.

Vanessa Hope, Corporate Development Manager at Acorn, said: “James believes that these qualifications have given him the skills to succeed in his career, and encourages and inspires others within the company to do the same.”

HR Manager at Vista Retail Support Ltd, Kathryn Powell, added: “It can be seen that James has succeeded in his career by integrating his learning from the VQ training into his professional practice, and this has assisted him in achieving his success to-date.”

Paul Wiggins, BPW Insurance Services Limited 

Recently recognised as winner of the Cardiff Chartered Institute of Insurance ‘Young Achiever’ of 2014 / 15, Paul Wiggins works for Newport based BPW Insurance Services as an Insurance Broker. Since 2012, Paul has achieved a Modern Apprenticeship Providing Financial Services, Advanced Diploma in Insurance ‘Charted Insurance Broker’ status.

Paul’s dedication to his own continuous professional development and commitment to his learning programmes has been very clear - he achieved his Advanced CII Diploma in two years, a programme that normally takes five years. As the outgoing President of the ‘Young Professionals Group’ for the Cardiff branch of the CII, Paul is testament to the success of vocational learning.

Sean Driscoll, Corporate Development Manager at Acorn, said: “Paul has been instrumental in the growth of his employer, BPW Insurance.”

As part of his role, Paul has identified and created several additional roles within BPW, supported by the Job Growth Wales initiative. All staff recruited via this scheme have been employed full time and have successfully progressed onto Apprenticeships themselves.

BPW Insurance Services Director, Jason Evans, said: “Paul’s passion for personal development was not just for personal achievement, but to inspire others to achieve their qualifications, setting the foundation for the company to achieve corporate chartered status in the near future.”  

James and Paul attended the Wales VQ Learner of the Year Awards ceremony in Cardiff at St David's Hotel on the 9th of June. Both received certificates for their commitment to vocational learning with James chosen as runner-up VQ Learner of the Year.

For further information about the vocational qualifications we provide contact us here >