Blackburn BMW Apprentice is College’s First to Achieve Distinction in New Exam Format

A customer service apprentice from Clitheroe has become the first Bowker BMW apprentice to achieve a distinction in a new apprenticeship format.

19-year-old Ella Grimshaw, an apprentice at Bowker BMW in Blackburn, completed her Customer service apprenticeship with Blackburn College. Ella achieved distinctions in all three elements of the course: professional discussion, observation and showcase portfolio.

The new process, called an End Point Assessment (EPA), is an impartial assessment of an apprentice’s skills, knowledge and behaviours compared with the apprenticeship standard. 

Ella, a former pupil at St Augustine’s High School in Clitheroe, said: “I’m really pleased to achieve distinctions. It was a nice bonus to be told the results were in the new format.The blend of coursework and practical on-the-job learning really suits me. I’ve learned a lot and gained confidence talking to customers. My manager and colleagues have been very supportive and I’d like to continue learning with Bowker.”

For Bowker BMW in Blackburn, Stewart Rose said: “Congratulations to Ella. This is an amazing result; especially when you consider the disruption she has faced due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Bowker has a proud tradition of success within the apprentice community, and Ella’s exceptional results will see. 

“Ella’s success is another example of how the partnership between Bowker BMW and Blackburn College continues to flourish through work placement and apprenticeship opportunities for students.”

Blackburn College Principal and Chief Executive Dr Fazal Dad said: “Congratulations to Ella for completing her EPA and finishing with an outstanding distinction grade.

 “We have a great relationship with Bowker BMW which has enabled our apprentices the opportunity to gain practical experience in a professional setting at a local employer. I look forward to seeing how Ella continues to progress with Bowker BMW.”

The long-standing partnership – first signed in 2015 – has led to a steady stream of Motor Vehicle students accessing work experience and learning on the job through the Bowker BMW Apprenticeship programme.

The Bowker BMW Apprenticeship programme offers College students the opportunity to train alongside master technicians, with several Blackburn College students having already gone on to employment with Bowker BMW.

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