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Speakers

Mark Dawe, Chief Executive, AELP (Chair)

Mark was appointed as the new Chief Executive of AELP in March 2016 succeeding Stewart Segal following his announcement to step down in January 2016.  He is on the Board of WorldSkills UK and the UfI Trust as well as a range of government boards such as the SFA / EFA advisory board and the DfE’s Apprenticeship Stakeholder Board.

Most recently, Mark Dawe was the chief executive of OCR, the exam board, for 5 years. He is currently a governor of Sawston Village College and Stapleford Community Primary School and a scout leader. Mark has a wealth of experience across a board spectrum in the education field. Prior to his role at OCR, Mark was Principal of Oaklands FE College having been Deputy Director and AELP Board Director, FE Strategy at the Department of Education and Skills and before that as Deputy Director, Adult Basic Skills Strategy Unit after joining the department in 2003.

Having read Economics at Cambridge University before qualifying as a chartered accountant at KPMG, Mark joined Canterbury College, becoming Head of Corporate Services in 1994. In 2000, he helped set up eGS, an e-procurement provider to the public sector.

Alison Morris, Director - Sector Development, ETF

Alison has worked in the skills sector for over fifteen years. She is currently Director of Sector Development at the ETF, where she is responsible for technical education, social mobility and inclusion, learning technologies, and initial teacher education.

Alison previously worked at UKCES where she carried out policy and research work in areas including higher level skills, employability, education-business links and careers guidance.

Nicola Turner, Head of Skills, HEFCE

National policy lead for skills at HEFCE with strategic responsibility for degree apprenticeships, industrial strategy and graduate outcomes. She has produced two independent reviews into STEM graduate employability (Wakeham and Shadbolt), established the Degree Apprenticeship Development Fund, the Engineering Conversion Course pilot and the Institute of Coding. Previously the Director of Employability Strategy at Aston University, Birmingham, her experience spans employability, employer engagement, regional growth and social mobility. In 2015, Nicola was honoured with an MBE for services to graduate employability and Higher Education.

Twitter: @NicTurner2013

Jonathan Mitchell, Deputy Director (Standards Development), Institute for Apprenticeships

Until April 2017, Jonathan Mitchell worked as a teacher and senior leader at a number of leading schools in Scotland, England and America for over seventeen years. His commitment to building partnerships between employers and schools and training at national and local levels led to his involvement in high-profile curricular and qualification development, initial teacher training and national educational conferences. In April 2017 he joined the newly-formed Institute for Apprenticeships. As a Deputy Director with responsibility for Standards Development, he now leads a large team of officials working with over 2,600 employers to ensure the creation of a national suite of high quality apprenticeship standards leading to high quality apprenticeships. In April 2018 the Institute will also take on responsibility for the development of the Government’s new T-Level technical qualifications.

Twitter: @IFAteched

 

Lucy Sydney, Director of Strategic Relationships for VTQ, Ofqual

Lucy Sydney took up her post as Director of Strategic Relationships for Vocational and Technical Qualifications at Ofqual in May 2017. Her team is responsible for engaging and influencing key stakeholders across the VTQ landscape, promoting awareness and understanding of Ofqual's work, and feeding in views from those who use and depend on qualifications. Primary interlocutors include 150+ Awarding Organisations; employers' organisations; schools, colleges and their representative bodies; the Department for Education and members of its departmental family; and other parts of UK and devolved Government. Over the last 20 years she has served in a range of stakeholder engagement, policy and operational delivery roles at the heart of government, in and around Cabinet Office/HM Treasury and their arms' length bodies.

Twitter: @ofqual

John Pritchard, Head of Apprenticeships, BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT

After serving 23 years in the military, John left to establish Smart Computing, a training provider working with Cambridge Regional College to deliver the IT Digital and Professional qualifications and apprenticeships.  During that time, he ran national pilots for the introduction of the new User and Technical apprenticeship and was involved in designing new qualifications for the sector. John was awarded the City & Guilds gold medal of excellence for IT and apprenticeship training across the IT sector, as well as, Retail, Finance, the NHS, MOD and Trade Unions. Furthermore, has since been honoured with lifetime membership to C&G for contributions to educations

Whilst working with the employers to design the new Apprenticeship Standards at the Tech Partnership John was ensuring employers, providers and Awarding Organisations requirements were aligned to the government regulations to enhance the learners experience, qualifications and competencies whilst beginning their IT careers.

As Director of Learning & Development at Arch, he directed the implementation of the new Apprenticeship Standards and designing the curriculum for delivery to the employers. John now holds the position of Head of Apprenticeships at BCS, working with BCS partners to provide excellence for the Digital IT Apprenticeship Standards. 

As Head of Apprenticeships John now leads the team whilst meeting the employers requirements set in the new Apprenticeship Standards and align the End Point Assessments to meet all sectors engaging in Digital and IT Apprenticeships. His aim is to bring both employers and providers together to ensure the highest quality provision and support can be offered through BCS to support the learners in their career development and closing the existing Digital and IT skills gaps.

Twitter: @bcs | #bcsapprenticeships

John Widdowson CBE, Principal & Chief Executive, New College Durham

John Widdowson began his career as a lawyer but has worked in Further and Higher Education for over thirty years, the last nineteen of which have been as Principal of New College Durham. The College was graded “Outstanding” by Ofsted in 2009. New College Durham is lead sponsor for two Academies in County Durham. In 2011 the College became one of the first two nationally to be granted Foundation Degree Awarding Powers by the Privy Council. John is Chair of the Mixed Economy Group of Colleges and was President for the Association of Colleges from August 2015 to July 2016.

John has published papers and articles on a range of education subjects and has spoken regularly at national and international conferences, focussing in recent years on the challenges of widening participation in higher education and developing college based higher education.

John was appointed CBE in June 2010 for services to Further and Higher Education.

Angela Fairchild, Deputy Director, Technical Education and Qualifications Reform, Department for Education

Angela Fairchild (and her job-share partner, Lucy Andrew) have recently taken up post as Deputy Directors for Technical Education and Qualifications Reform. They are responsible for reforming post-16 technical education from entry level to level 5, including the level 4/5 review and the post-16 review of qualifications at level 2 and 3. Angela and Lucy have spent the last four years reforming the school funding system including introducing the National Funding Formula for schools. Angela’s background prior to this was in qualifications reform, where she worked on the development of 14-19 Diplomas, and the reform of the GCSE.

Anthony Impey, CEO, Optimity & Chair, FSB Skills Policy Board

Anthony Impey is a technology entrepreneur who has built Optimity into the London’s leading provider of Wibre- a pioneering alternative to fibre optics that offers small businesses a faster and cheaper option for gigabit internet connectivity. The company is ranked as one of the top fifty most disruptive companies in the Future Fifty Awards.

He is also actively involved in promoting skills development and apprenticeships, including as Chair of the government’s Apprenticeship Stakeholder Board, Chair of the Federation of Small Business Skills Policy Board, and a member of the newly formed Skills Taskforce reporting to the Mayor of London. He has recently been appointed to the Board of Heart of the City- the UK’s largest responsible small business network chaired by Sir Harvey McGrath. 

He was awarded a MBE in the 2018 New Year’s Honours for Services to Apprenticeships, Small Business and Broadband Connectivity.

Twitter: @fsb_policy

Jan Atkinson, Talent and Organisational Development Director, Kier Group

Jan read history at Cambridge before starting her career in Banking and Finance, subsequently specialising in HR. Over the last 20 years she has undertaken HR roles spanning major business change, organisational capability development and operational service delivery in global FTSE organisations and the UK Civil Service.

Jan currently has responsibility at Kier for talent attraction, employee engagement and development, as well as the design and delivery of the leadership development offer for employees at all levels in Kier. She has responsibility for the inclusion and diversity agenda within Kier and is driving initiatives to create an inclusive, agile workplace, increase the diversity mix across the business and build pathways into work for more diverse and/ or disadvantaged talent groups – such as NEETs, women returners and ex-offenders.

Steve Radley, Director of Policy, CITB

Steve is responsible for working with the industry and with government to create the right environment and support for employers to invest in the skills that they need. His responsibilities include overseeing CITB’s research work to create the evidence base that underpins the organisation’s funding approach, working closely with training providers and with National governments across Britain and at a local level. His team also works closely with employers and Federations to ensure that funding support meets their needs and is simple to access. He is also responsible for CITB’s relations with the media.      

Steve joined CITB from his role as Director of Policy and External Affairs at the Manufacturers organisation, EEF. Previously he was Chief Economist at the Henley Centre and the Policy Adviser – Education and Training at the Confederation of British Industry.

Dr Darryll Bravenboer, Director of Apprenticeships and Skills at Middlesex University

Dr Darryll Bravenboer is Director of Apprenticeships and Skills at Middlesex University. His responsibilities include driving and delivering the Middlesex ‘University for Skills’ strategy at national, regional and institutional levels. He has extensive experience of developing professional, vocational and work-based higher education in response to the needs of a wide range of employment sectors in diverse professional contexts including higher and degree apprenticeships and other areas of academic enterprise. His research interests include the philosophy and sociology of education, higher education policy, fair access, widening participation, lifelong learning and vocational, work-based and employer-responsive higher education.

Darryll is Chair of Middlesex University’s Apprenticeship Steering Group, Chair of Linking London Higher and Degree Apprenticeships Group, a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Trustee and Deputy Chair of the SEEC credit consortium, Board Director of University Vocational Awards Council and is a member of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education Advisory Group for Higher Education in Apprenticeships.

Andy Headworth, Deputy Director, Recruitment & Apprenticeships, HM Revenue & Customs

Andy heads up recruitment and apprenticeships for HM Revenue & Customs, aligning and developing the strategic priorities for attracting, recruiting and retaining talent across the organisation. As an essential part of our future talent strategy, HMRC currently has over 2000 apprentices, and offer 30 different apprenticeships across 16 professions. Prior to becoming a civil servant he led a successful consultancy practice working with organisations globally on talent acquisition and social recruiting strategies. He is the author of the best selling book, Social Media Recruitment.

Twitter: @andyheadworth

Dr Darryll Bravenboer, Director of Apprenticeships and Skills, Middlesex University

Dr Darryll Bravenboer is Director of Apprenticeships and Skills at Middlesex University. His responsibilities include driving and delivering the Middlesex ‘University for Skills’ strategy at national, regional and institutional levels. He has extensive experience of developing professional, vocational and work-based higher education in response to the needs of a wide range of employment sectors in diverse professional contexts including higher and degree apprenticeships and other areas of academic enterprise. His research interests include the philosophy and sociology of education, higher education policy, fair access, widening participation, lifelong learning and vocational, work-based and employer-responsive higher education.

Darryll is Chair of Middlesex University’s Apprenticeship Steering Group, Chair of Linking London Higher and Degree Apprenticeships Group, a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, a Trustee and Deputy Chair of the SEEC credit consortium, Board Director of University Vocational Awards Council and is a member of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education Advisory Group for Higher Education in Apprenticeships.

Twitter: @MiddlesexUni

Kirsti Lord, Deputy Chief Executive, AoC

Kirsti joined AoC as Deputy Chief Executive, Member Services in August 2017. She has 17 years’ experience working in Further Education from Part-Time Lecturer to her most recent role as Acting Principal. The focus of her work since 2008 has been around quality improvement and curriculum design, leading a large department from inadequate to outstanding between 2010 and 2012 and maintained outcomes and student experience at this level until she progressed in 2015. In her most recent college role, Kirsti worked with colleagues to liaise with ESFA, the FE Commissioner’s team and Ofsted to secure removal of both financial and quality notices of concern and to successfully complete a merger in 2017.