First CVQO ‘Be Apprentice Ready’ workshop held at Holcombe Moor


CVQO has increased its ongoing support to learners with the running of the first ‘Be Apprentice Ready’ workshop at Holcombe Moor Cadet Training Centre, Bury, in partnership with Trafford College, Greater Manchester Army Cadet Force and North West RFCA.

The residential course was designed to hone employability skills through workplace-relevant qualifications, workshops, coaching and mentoring to help CVQO learners become better candidates for apprenticeship and employment opportunities.

Army and Sea Cadets from the North West enjoyed a varied programme of activities which included CV writing and interview skills (delivered by trainers from Trafford College), STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) activities, Citizen Aid training and completing a Level 1 Food Hygiene Certificate – as well as the opportunity to gain a CVQO-led BTEC Level 2 qualification in Teamwork and Personal Development in the Community.

The workshop began with former Army chef, now entrepreneur (and Cadet Force Adult Volunteer) Gary Barnshaw, who delivered some key insight into his own career journey from cadet at a Manchester detachment – where he was inspired by his adult instructors – to owner of an international drinks company.

In addition, Charlotte Stoddard (Trafford Council’s Apprentice of the Year) and Tom Linaker, apprentice from Siemens, both graduates of the Trafford College apprenticeship programme, delivered an inspirational talk to the cadets on their own experiences during a ‘meet the employer’ networking session.

Guy Horridge, CVQO’s Chief Executive, said: “I am hugely proud to have attended our CVQO ‘Be Apprentice Ready’ pilot event and so thankful to Trafford College, Greater Manchester Army Cadet Force and our own staff for making it all possible.

“Apprenticeships in the UK are massively sought after, as well as being high on the Government’s agenda. We want to create a link between the Cadet experience, the CVQO qualification and apprenticeship opportunities and this course provided CVQO learners new, workplace-relevant qualifications and advice as well as their important CVQO-led BTEC Level 2 qualification that will put them in the best position to secure those opportunities.

“I am sure this will be the first of many such events as we look to add even further value to the cadet experience and give CVQO learners the greatest chance of success, whichever path they choose to follow.

“I’m delighted that some of the cadets from this weekend will be continuing the discussion with Trafford College as they consider the further education and apprenticeship options that this workshop has opened up to them.”

Reserve Forces