Business Apprentice Chloe named Apprentice of the Year

25 Sep 2018

Business School Featured Jobs/Apprenticeships

Chloe Dowd recently completed her Level 2 Business Administration Apprenticeship and is now working towards her Level 3 at VLC (Stairlifts) Ltd t/a Versatile Lift Company.

In spring 2018 she was shortlisted for and went on to win the Apprentice of the Year (Over 20) category at the first St Helens Chamber Business Awards, beating off tough competition.

Chloe said: “It was quite a surprise to win Apprentice of the Year at the Chamber’s Business Awards and a bit nerve racking.

“For me it was a very big achievement. When I was first shortlisted I didn’t think much of it as I knew there was tough competition with the large volume of Apprentices in St Helens.

“Winning has been a massive achievement. From where I was to where I am now has been a big step for me and my life; when I first left school I didn’t think I’d make it to where I am now.”

Chloe began her Apprenticeship in 2017 after attending a ‘Meet the Apprentice’ event where she was interviewed by VLC representatives. She was invited for a second interview and work trial, and successfully secured the position of Business Administration Apprentice.

Chloe commented: “I’ve really enjoyed meeting my new colleagues and learning new things. Before I started my Apprenticeship I didn’t really know what an admin role included, but since being VLC I’ve learnt so many new things.

“Doing my Apprenticeship has been both challenging and rewarding. The Chamber staff have really supported me in improving my confidence. I used to get very nervous before I started. I still have a few things to work on, but the Chamber has supported me and taught me lots throughout my Apprenticeship.”

Since completing her Apprenticeship Chloe has grown in self-confidence and ability, becoming a valued member of the VLC team.

Lucy Swift, Office Manager at Versatile Lift Company, commented: “From day one I have worked closely with Chloe and done a lot of her training. She’s really shone throughout her Apprenticeship. It’s given her a confidence that she didn’t know she had.

“Chloe is reliable and dependable, the Apprenticeship has been good for her as she’s achieved her qualifications, but has also been a success for us as a company as she has grown to become a part of the team that we really wouldn’t want to lose.

“It’s really good having an Apprentice working within the company as you can mould and train them in the way you as a company like to work. It’s really nice to see an Apprentice’s progression in work and also as people.”

Proud of Chloe’s progression, dedication and positive attitude, Lucy nominated her for the Chamber’s Apprentice of the Year Award.

Lucy added: “Chloe has been one of our most successful Apprentices in terms of how she’s become such a valued member of the team. We believed in her and wanted some recognition for her success as an Apprentice, as we felt she deserved it.

“We were very pleased when Chloe was shortlisted for the award, as it was the first Business Awards we weren’t sure how big the field of entrants would be, but we believed she was good enough to win. If you were at the awards you’ll know our table definitely cheered the loudest when she won.”

Chloe continues to work towards her Level 3 Business Administration qualification with support from the Chamber.

Chloe added: “I’m really happy that I did an Apprenticeship. My younger brother was dead set on going to college, but then he found out I was doing an Apprenticeship and you could earn while you learn and get a job at the end of it, he changed his mind. He’s now happily working as an Apprentice too.

“I think Apprenticeships are a much better option for people who don’t enjoy the classroom environment.

“I’ve managed to get a job out of it and am progressing in my role, gaining new skills and gaining confidence to do things that I didn’t like to do when I started like answering the telephone.”

Entries for the next St Helens Chamber Business Awards open in early January 2019, to find out more about the awards and the Apprentice of the Year Category email

For more information on the training and Apprenticeships available through St Helens Chamber contact the Workforce Development Team on 01744 742333 or email