TClarke’s Apprentice of the Year has been won by JTL Apprentice Emma Nichols who works for TClarke’s South West team. TClarke’s Group Managing Director, Mike Crowder congratulated Emma for her performance in the final interviews and through her apprenticeship.
“Emma isn’t our first female finalist but she is our first female winner of the competition and she won’t be the last. She won through in a very tight competition, for the way she articulated her approach to teamwork – and also we were very impressed by the fact that Emma has proved quite a few people wrong along the way! She’s an outstanding prospect – both as a qualified professional and as a future leader for our business.
Emma joins TClarke Future Leaders
All the four finalists are automatically enrolled in TClarke’s Future Leaders, which takes a group of people with high potential from across our UK business and brings them a range of professional development, training and project work opportunities to help each one to build their expertise – as Mike explains:
“Emma will now have access to our structured professional development programme for future leaders within the business. We will do everything necessary to help Emma build her career with us, to take on responsibility and gain exposure to the challenges which will grow her expertise.
“What she will also find is that her peer group will become a valuable support and knowledge sharing network. Since we started this programme, we’ve seen that people in each cohort have taken a lot of benefit from this support, during their day to day work. It helps them to solve problems, share ideas and build their network within TClarke.”
Emma was delighted and surprised to win. Her victory vindicated her decision to switch careers a few years back. Battling through to take the opportunity:
“I was surprised to hear my name announced as winner – it took a moment or two to sink in! My route into the business wasn’t a direct one. After school I went into education and was working as a Teaching Assistant in a school. It was all going fine, but I had ideas I could do more with my future. I had always had an interest in construction, but when I first mentioned it, the reaction from some people close to me was that they didn’t know if I’d be happy or comfortable in an industry which has quite an ‘old school’ reputation. It wasn’t easy changing people’s minds, convincing myself or battling through to find a good way into the industry.
“TClarke are one of the few firms that offer really good apprenticeships so I was absolutely delighted when I got accepted by them. I am a determined and motivated person, so when I got the chance, I must say I’ve worked hard to take it. Winning today is great news and I’m looking forward to taking all the new opportunities that it creates.”
Emma’s JTL Training Officer Nigel Smith said ‘She’s an exceptional apprentice who will be progressing to complete her apprenticeship after she finishes her third year of training.’