A former modern apprentice from Glasgow has made it to the final in a national competition which recognises the success of apprenticeships across Scotland.
23-year-old Emma O’Halloran could soon be crowned the country’s Apprentice Ambassador of the Year after being shortlisted in the final of the Scottish Apprenticeship Awards run by Skills Development Scotland.
The showpiece event recognises individuals and businesses across Scotland who have championed the value of apprenticeships.
Emma, a former pupil at St Andrew’s RC Secondary, was 17 when she joined Glasgow Scientific Services (GSS) in 2015 as an apprentice Chemical Analyst. Despite having a place at college, Emma applied for a modern apprenticeship with Glasgow City Council and has never looked back.
The commitment to her apprenticeship was clear from day one and, within two years, Emma had completed her SVQ and college work (HNC) and gained a place at university studying Applied Bioscience.
During her apprenticeship Emma was named the council’s Modern Apprentice of the Year in 2016 and in 2019 she received the Trades House Glasgow highly coveted Modern Apprentice of the Year award (and used her winnings to study a Mental Health Awareness course).
That same year (2019) Emma completed her apprenticeship, secured a job with GSS and is now a qualified analyst studying the final year of her honours degree.
Jane White, Group Manager at Glasgow Scientific Services, said: “Emma’s apprenticeship with us has been the stepping stone for her career and amounted success. She puts her heart and soul into everything she does.
“To say Emma has exceeded our expectations is an understatement. She is an inspiration and joy to work with.
“It was clear from day one Emma was going to make the most of her apprenticeship. She completed her essential training well ahead of target and has advanced her scientific abilities and skills in a such a way that she really is an asset.
“The wealth of experience that comes with doing an apprenticeship such as this one means Emma has gained far more hands-on experience than a graduate coming out of university.”
Emma is also a mentor and helps secondary school pupils gain experience and skills to prepare them for work. Emma meets regularly with mentees, keeps up-to-date with how they are doing in school and prepares work experience for them within the GSS laboratory.
The winner will be announced on Thursday 4 March at a virtual awards ceremony.
Further information on the Scottish Apprenticeships Award 2020 is available here