More than 30 years’ experience in television and media was Sue Jeffries’ ‘qualification’ for starting up her own training company that now specialises in three media apprenticeships in roles ranging from costume to special effects.
As managing director of Sgil Cymru, embedded in the industry at its Pinewood Studios base in Rumney, Sue acts as lead assessor across media apprenticeships at levels 3 and 4.
Now Sue has been named a finalist in this year’s Vocational Qualification (VQ) Awards in Wales, which are designed to reward individuals and organisations for their commitment, hard work and achievements.
The awards ceremony will be held at The Exchange Hotel, Cardiff on May 3 to coincide with VQ Day. The awards are organised by the Welsh Government in partnership with the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), ColegauCymru / CollegesWales and Qualifications Wales.
A VQ Trainer of the Year finalist, Sue recruits industry experts as freelance assessors to deliver flexible training that meets the demands of television production across the BBC, ITV and other independent companies.
Instead of day-release college training, apprentices attend learning blocks at the studios, built around production schedules and this is fast becoming the standard entry route into the creative industries.
Sue assesses in both English and Welsh and apprenticeships are extending through different areas of the media with BBC Cymru Wales now employing apprentices in radio, sport and multiplatform.
Her recruitment workshop process to identify potential apprentices has been recognised by Creative Skillset as an example of best practice and Sue speaks at conferences and events to recruit the next generation of media professionals.
Carmela Carrubba, of Real SFX, said: “Sue goes the extra mile with each apprentice. If it wasn’t for Sue and her apprenticeship programme, our business would not have grown to where it is today.”
Sue said: “I take personal responsibility for the learners at Sgil Cymru and commit to their continued success.”
The VQ Trainer of the Year Award recognises individual trainers who have made a telling contribution to supporting learners in the workplace to achieve excellence whilst also constantly improving their own skills and knowledge.
In addition to the award ceremony, learning providers across Wales are being encouraged to organise regional events that engage with learners of all ages on VQ Day.
Vocational qualifications are important to the economy, companies and individuals, as they deliver the trained, talented employees that businesses are crying out for and ensure young people have the skills needed to succeed in education and work.
Minister for Welsh Language and Lifelong Learning, Eluned Morgan said: “A VQ award is a symbol of dedication towards a chosen profession, demonstrating to others a real commitment towards personal and professional development.
“The awards help us to celebrate those Welsh employers, learners and trainers who are already going that extra mile when it comes to developing vocational skills and qualifications.”
The Apprenticeship Programme in Wales is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.
Sue Jeffries, a VQ Trainer of the Year finalist.