The Yorkshire College of Beauty is the first training provider to complete the Level 3 Advanced Beauty Therapist apprenticeship. Tutor, Nicola Roberts, shares the college’s journey for National Apprenticeship Week 2022.
The Yorkshire College of Beauty is one of the largest beauty apprenticeship providers in the north. After teaching at the college for 14 years, Nicola Roberts has embarked on the journey of being one of the first to deliver the Level 3 Advanced Beauty Therapist apprenticeship. A journey that was so successful that one of their apprentices was one of the first learners in the country to achieve a distinction.
What’s it like being the very first centre to complete the Level 3 Advanced Beauty Therapist apprenticeship?
According to Nicola, tough but extremely rewarding.
Designing and delivering the qualification has been a learning curve for the centre, however, it is not one that hasn’t come with significant benefits. She says, “To be honest, it’s been a challenge because we were one of the first to get it off the ground.
We’ve delivered Level 3 Beauty for years at the college but this time we had brand new treatments to take on board and adapt to match the syllabus.
“Now it’s off the ground, we can see all of the challenges we faced paying off. We’ve got things in place so it will be a lot easier. So I’d say it’s been challenging but worth it, because we’re seeing the students go through it and passing with distinctions which is lovely.”
And how did the centre overcome the challenges of creating a new qualification? Nicola tells us that first and foremost, you have to have a great team. She credits the collaborative approach of the in house team at The Yorkshire College of Beauty and their deep collective knowledge and experience of the sector and qualification delivery. She also describes how the support of the centre’s end-point assessment organisation has been crucial to her success.
“Tina and the apprenticeship team from VTCT, in particular, have been absolutely wonderful. I don’t think we could have overcome the challenges and achieved such a great outcome without VTCT’s support.
That, combined with the fact we have been creating and delivering qualifications for years meant that we had the expertise to face the challenges and have a successful outcome.”
The Yorkshire College of Beauty has been developing and delivering qualifications for over 35 years and has grown to become the largest provider of beauty apprenticeships in the North of the UK. For Nicola, the secret to their success is truly understanding and supporting their learners to see them fulfil their highest potential. The greatest compliment to the training provider is the volume of learners that complete their qualifications and come back to educate the next generation of beauty therapists. She says:
“Learner success is really what drives us. We pride ourselves on seeing the incredible careers that our learners go into. But what’s really lovely is seeing them come back.
For example, we’ve got quite a few members of staff that have been tutors for years at the college that actually trained as apprentices here, initially. In fact, one of the newest members of our teaching team was a student that I taught 10 years ago.”
“It’s really heart-warming. It’s nice to know that you’ve had something to do with that and made such a great impression that they want to come back. That’s the nice bit – the rewarding bit that you get to see at the end, when all the hard work’s been put in.”
So, what are their methods for keeping learners so inspired and engaged that they keep coming back?
“It’s about keeping the delivery of the course engaging; keeping the topics that we cover up to date, and covering emerging trends in the industry.
One of the nice things that has come with the new Advanced Beauty Therapist Standard was that we had to use new machinery that we’ve never had before. So we’ve had to invest in quite a lot of new technology at college, and it’s been great to share something new and different to keep the students motivated.”
Keep an eye on our website and social media for more inspiring content about apprenticeships. Whether you’re interested in beginning an Apprenticeship yourself, or interested in taking on an apprentice in your own business, we’ll fill you in on all you need to know this National Apprenticeship Week.