We are delighted to announce that TQUK EPA has recently entered into a partnership with PGL after assessing and passing eight of their Hospitality Team Member apprentices!

The apprentices, who joined PGL in 2017, underwent in-depth training programmes that lasted for more than 12 months and equipped them with all the fast-paced Hospitality skills that their chosen specialities required. Apprentices worked in harmony as those who specialised in Housekeeping learned how to keep facilities in tip-top shape as guests went about a full day of fun activities. Food Production apprentices immersed themselves in juicy, flaming, hot-off-the-grill kitchen skills as they prepared nutritious food that the Food and Beverage Service apprentices served hungry guests with their world class customer service.

When PGL decided that they were ready for their final test, the End-Point Assessment, they approached TQUK to partner with them and help them assess all of their apprentices. During the End-Point Assessment period, our End-Point Assessors saw all of the apprentices in their element, demonstrating their full competence across a range of assessment activities. We’re happy to announce that all eight had mastered their programmes.

Who is PGL?

People tubing down a river

PGL is the U.K’s leading outdoor education provider. They offer a wide range of services including educational activity courses, school trips, children’s activity holidays and summer camps with centres across the UK and France. Not only is PGL the largest provider of outdoor instructor qualifications in the UK, but they’ve also been providing apprenticeships for over 20 years for any individual looking to make their mark in the outdoor sector.

The Hospitality Team Member Apprenticeship

Apprentice benefiting from the TQUK and PGL partnership

The PGL Level 2 Hospitality Team Member Apprenticeship is perfect for anyone set on a career in hospitality. Apprentices can choose to perform different roles in the company depending on their chosen speciality including Food Production, Food and Beverage Service or Housekeeping. PGL recruit their apprentices based on their passion, enthusiasm and willingness to learn, which is why no previous experience is required for any of these specialities.

The Hospitality Team Member Apprenticeship Standard contains four End-Point Assessment components: the Business Project, Practical Observation, Situational Judgement Test and Professional Discussion. We were happy to provide extensive support to PGL’s apprentices in their EPA planning meeting where our End-Point Assessors talked them through what to expect for every assessment activity so that they could go in fully prepared. And they didn’t disappoint! Throughout their assessments, all eight apprentices rose up to the challenge and put all of their fantastic knowledge and skills on display. With an apprenticeship certificate in their hands, the great eight have a bright future ahead of them as they now have the full confidence to perform and excel in their Hospitality careers!

And what a future they hold! Not only are all of PGL’s apprentices offered a role in the organisation after they complete their programme, but many of PGL’s senior managers started life at PGL as an apprentice!  That means that many of these great eight may soon be flying up the PGL food chain!

PGL Talks About the TQUK EPA Partnership

PGL talking about the TQUK EPA partnership

TQUK EPA is delighted to be in partnership with PGL and to assist their apprentices at the end of their programme. We saw great passion and commitment from PGL’s apprentices during their EPA and were incredibly proud to complete all eight after they aced their assessments!

Here’s what PGL had to say about the TQUK EPA partnership:

Philip Drew-White, the Apprenticeship Programme Lead (Hospitality), said that:

“TQUK met our requirements in every way. They were extremely accommodating of our requirements and, having set them tight schedules for completing the End-Point Assessment activities, they fulfilled them within the required timescales through great communication, support and organisation, resulting in a 100% achievement for our learners.”

Their apprentices also wanted to chip in with their own thoughts:

Thomas Davies said that:

“During my assessment I found the organisation very good and felt Martina was very good and helpful. She was very nice and welcoming towards me. I felt good starting the assessment as I was well supported by staff. I particularly enjoyed the Knowledge Test and the Observation as I was confident in those areas. I also enjoyed writing and planning my Business Project although I did not enjoy the Discussion at the end of the End-Point Assessment because I was nervous. But overall I enjoyed the assessment and I was extremely pleased when I finished the assessment and passed. I would like to thank everyone who has helped me achieve this.”

Andrew Burch, who received a Distinction, wanted to chime in too:

I found the format in which the End-Point Assessment was held worked really well! The meetings on the phone were good. Very clear and very well instructed. Towards the start of my EPA I was very nervous and didn’t know what to expect but upon meeting with Jo my nerves went straight away! I felt a bit defeated toward the end thinking I wasn’t even going to pass but after I completed it I felt real proud.”

Nikolay Petrov also thought that:

“The whole EPA Organisation on the initial phone meeting about the Knowledge Test, Observation, Business Project and Professional Discussion were great. I have received the necessary support, attention and explanations about the program, the conditions and the things that were required of me. Although I felt nervous and overwhelmed when the End-Point Assessment started, I did well because my assessor was very positive and friendly, communicative and smiling.

“I didn’t enjoy the assessment period much, because I was very nervous and tense, but upon completion, I felt great, and finally realised that the assessment period was full of good memories and was a great experience in my life.”

Rebecca Pill also had this to say:

“I think that the End-Point Assessment was well organised because I was given information about each stage of the assessment and how they would work, timings and locations. I also feel I had enough time to complete all the work books and my Business Project. I felt happy to reach the End-Point Assessment, but I also felt nervous about some elements of the assessment such as the Professional Discussion. I thought that Martina was friendly and put me at ease during the Observation and Professional Discussion. I didn’t enjoy the Professional Discussion but I enjoyed the other parts of the assessment. I felt nervous during the assessment period but I was happy to finish and pass.”

Kelle McQuade, Head of EPAO at TQUK, wanted to congratulate all of the apprentices:

“TQUK pride ourselves on the flexibility and support that we offer with our End-Point Assessment services, and we’re very happy that PGL have appreciated what we bring to the table during our partnership! I’d like to congratulate all of their Hospitality Team Member apprentices on successfully passing their programme. You should all be very proud of your hard work and determination!

“It’s only natural to be nervous during your End-Point Assessment, but you all passed with flying colours so you clearly put in the preparation and work needed for your assessments. Feeling confident goes a long way when you’re undertaking any assessment, so try to get rid of those doubts in the future and go in with the full belief that you’ll excel.

“I look forward to PGL and TQUK EPA’s partnership as we move forward into the future. May this be the first of many successful apprenticeship completions!

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To keep up to date with the latest news about the TQUK and PGL partnership, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

 

 

You’ve completed your Formative Study, received your qualifications and just passed Gateway. Now you have to prepare for your End-Point Assessment (EPA).

It’s a big moment in your apprenticeship. But don’t worry – TQUK EPA has your back.

Our End-Point Assessors conduct dozens of EPAs every month, and they see first-hand all the things that apprentices have to deal with. Here are some tips to help you prepare for EPA and finally master your apprenticeship.

The best way to prepare for EPA? Change your mindset!

Apprentice changing her mind about how to prepare for EPA

Preparing for EPA can be overwhelming. The idea of a final exam can really pile on the pressure. This pressure can be counterproductive – the stress it induces can lead some apprentices to underperform. And that doesn’t help anyone.

Rather than think of it as End-Point Assessment, think of it as End-Point Achievement. This might sound a bit cheesy, but it works. Instead of thinking of EPA as a test, it will inspire a more positive outlook to think of EPA as an opportunity to showcase what you can do – whether this is your exceptional culinary skills, unquestionable knowledge of the care sector or exemplary levels of customer service.

Check out this great blog from our Head of EPAO, Kelle McQuade, on how changing your mindset about how EPA works can make a massive difference to the results.

Planning is key

Apprentice planning for EPA

There are many things you can do in advance of EPA to prepare and make sure you have every chance to succeed:

  • Talk with your End-Point Assessor, Employer and Trainer: Before your End-Point Assessment begins, be sure to raise any concerns you may have with your End-Point Assessor, Trainer or Employer. After all, these people are there to support you through your apprenticeship and can provide valuable resources and guidance.
  • Get your times and dates right: Double check that you have the correct times and dates for your assessments. There’s a lot going on during EPA, and it’s easy to get things mixed up. Some assessments may require you to be off-site, so make sure you’re going to the right place.
  • Lingo/Jargon: Each sector has its own jargon that professionals use to communicate with each other. You’ve probably picked up a few terms along the way. Before your assessment begins, make sure you’re using these terms correctly. You’ll need to demonstrate your competence in your role!

Relax

Apprentice relaxing before her EPA

You’ve gotten to the End-Point Assessment, so your Employer clearly thinks you’re ready. You’ve come a long way and you’ve gained all the knowledge, skills and behaviours that your programme requires. You’ve got this – relax, be confident and show them what you can do!

Bring additional evidence to your EPA

Additional evidence needed for EPA

Some assessments may require you to bring additional evidence with you to the assessment in order to properly demonstrate your knowledge, skills and behaviours. For instance, during a Practical Observation, you may need to bring along extra materials and evidence in order to supplement your performance. Or you may need to bring notes or copies of a project you completed to refer to during your Professional Discussion. If you’re unsure, then you can ask your End-Point Assessor about anything you’ll need to bring.

Ask your assessor

Apprentice asking questions during EPA

One of the best things you can do to prepare for your EPA is to have the confidence to ask questions. You may have assessments where you will interact with your End-Point Assessor directly and there may be instances where you won’t be sure what they’re asking of you. If you’re not sure, don’t be afraid to stop and ask them to clarify what you need to do. It’s better to ask in the moment than to muddle through your assessment without the correct guidance.

Stick to what you know

Apprentices reviewing what they know

When answering questions during an assessment, like during a Practical Observation or a Professional Discussion, be sure to stick to answers that are based on your own experiences. Not only will this show the End-Point Assessor that you can apply your knowledge to your assessment, but it will also give them a better picture of your competence, and they can thus ask questions to fill in any gaps.

Review your work

Apprentice reviewing for EPA

This is perhaps the most important way to prepare for EPA. It’s vital that you review the knowledge, skills and behaviours you picked up during your apprenticeship so that you can identify areas where you can improve. TQUK EPA makes this easy. We provide a support package specific to your Apprenticeship Standard with an in-depth self-assessment section that covers the entirety of the assessment plan. Once you finish your self-assessment, you can improve on your knowledge, skills and behaviours and will be much better equipped to go into your End-Point Assessment.

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We’re always here to support our apprentices in any way we can. If you have questions about your EPA, call us at 03333 583 344 and speak to one of our EPA professionals.

To keep up to date with the latest news from TQUK EPA, return to our blog or follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

See you around The Hive!

 

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