Tech Industry Gold Digital Degree Apprenticeship Awards 2022 showcases sector talent

The second National Tech Industry Gold Digital Degree Apprenticeship Awards delivered another successful sweep of accolades for digital degree apprentices from across the UK.

Held during National Apprenticeship Week, the awards founded by TechSkills in 2021, recognise talent from within the digital degree apprenticeship sector. Four categories were up for grabs including business contribution, innovation, special recognition, and special achievement. The Minister for Skills, Alex Burghart MP, joined the event to share the importance of degree apprenticeships and how the government is working with employers to expand programmes across multiple sectors – including the announcements made by Tech Industry Gold employers, Amazon and BT.

Hosted by Sheila Flavell CBE, Chief Operating Officer of FDM Group and Deputy President for techUK, the programme was packed full of insights and innovations including news about Tech Industry Gold Digital Credentials being rolled out by TechSkills.

Attendees to the online event heard from Nikki Christie, Deputy Director for the Institute of Apprenticeships and Technical Education about the value of degree apprenticeships and the five reforms, in 2022, that will deliver substantial benefits to those looking to build their careers via the degree apprenticeship route. She said:

“It is a really exciting time to be involved in the world of digital apprenticeships. The sector brings huge benefits to our society and economy and, digital apprentices and their employers apply learned expertise to enhance day to day services, providing benefits across food delivery, health, energy, and many more sectors.”

“The five major reforms proposed will see more opportunities for Level 6 and Level 7 degree apprenticeships and include more integration between on and off the job training – the key principle of apprenticeships.”

Head of Apprenticeships for TechSkills, Julia Bateson, said:

“The quality of the entries was phenomenal this year. It is always rewarding to read the personal stories of the apprentices and the impact they have on their workplace. All nominees should be extremely proud of themselves.”

Life stories

Sharing personal experiences of their degree apprenticeships were finalists from the 2021awards. As part of a panel session chaired by Christelle Heikkila; Celine Williams, Zoe Bull, Paul Anderson, and Andy Mayne talked about the benefits of being on a degree programme. The panellists came from a variety of backgrounds including second careers and starting out at 16 as apprentice.

Celine Williams, a cyber security specialist for IBM said:

“Without the degree apprenticeship I would not have been able to achieve my aspirations. After not getting the A-Level grades I wanted, IBM’s Futures programme helped me to realise that I could still obtain that higher learning and succeed in my career.”

BT’s Early Careers Manager, Reace Wade, shared the benefits of the Tech Industry Gold Credentials programme, piloted by several higher education institutes and employers including BT (who awarded their 2021 apprentice graduates with Tech Industry Gold Credentials the following day, 9 February 2022).

The Awards were announced by Head Judge and Tech North Advocates founder, Naomi Timperley with four winners and eight highly commended across the four categories.

Awards 2022

Business Contribution

  • Winner – Carrie Garrad, IBM. University of Exeter
  • Highly Commended – Ranica Brown, Bloc Digital, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Highly Commended – Anthony Doolan, Lloyds Banking Group, Manchester Metropolitan University


  • Winner – Sam Newall, BT, University of Suffolk
  • Highly Commended – Alexander Cameron, Leonardo, University of Gloucester
  • Highly Commended – David Booth, Lloyds Banking Group, Manchester Metropolitan University

Special Achievement

  • Winner – Emma Nolan, Thales, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Highly Commended – Christine Kennedy, JPM Morgan, University of Exeter
  • Highly Commended – Nathan Dickson, BT, University of Suffolk

Special Recognition

  • Winner – Luke Holme, Lex Autolease, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Highly Commended – Ryan Whittaker, AstraZeneca, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Highly Commended – Teagan Coleman, Bentley Motors Limited, Manchester Metropolitan University

Host, Sheila Flavell CBE, rounded up the event saying:

“Congratulations to all nominees! You were selected by your employer or university out of thousands of peers on Tech Industry Gold accredited courses. Congratulations also to the eight highly commended apprentices and finally, well done to Carrie, Sam, Emma and Luke – a fantastic achievement.”