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Apprentice Laura nominated for second Gloucestershire award

By BHawes  |  Posted: February 17, 2014

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Commis chef Laura Woodridge is only 20 but she is already making her mark in the restaurant world.

A level three apprentice at Pepper Crescent restaurant in Cheltenham, she is celebrating her second award nomination in just a year.

Laura is a finalist in the Gloucester Citizen and Gloucestershire Echo Women in Business Awards after last year becoming Apprentice of the Year for services industries at the 2013 Gloucestershire Apprenticeship Awards.

Laura has worked at Pepper Crescent since 2012 and was recently promoted to commis chef taking full responsibility for the kitchen two days a week, and also manages its social media channels.

Laura said: "My apprenticeship at Pepper Crescent has always been handled with such care.

"Our director Linda has encouraged me to always do my best. She is the driving force behind my success.

"I would 100 per cent recommend an apprenticeship to other young people because I think it's the best way to learn if you have a trade you are passionate about. The best thing is that you get actual work experience as well as learning at Gloucestershire College."

The college is supporting the Gloucester Citizen and Gloucestershire Echo's Age of the Apprentice campaign together with Delphi Diesel Systems, South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, Gloucestershire Engineering Training, Western Power Distribution and Speller Metcalfe.

Pepper Crescent's owner and founder, Linda Jones, is a key supporter of apprenticeships and Laura follows in the footsteps of Mitchell Pulley, a former GC apprentice who was named 'Apprentice of the Year' in 2012 and former apprentice, Agnieszka Soroka, Pepper Crescent's head chef.

 Agnieszka has been working at the eatery in Royal Crescent since 2010 and now teaches level two apprentices at Gloucestershire College alongside her role there.

 Agnieszka said; "It feels amazing to have come full circle. I am grateful for the support that I have received throughout from both Gloucestershire College and the Pepper Crescent team and I enjoy sharing my industry experience with the students. It's fantastic."

 Agnieszka has also been announced as a finalist in the female mentor category of the Women in Business Awards.

Linda said: "Apprentices bring vibrancy to the team, and also give other team members the opportunity to develop their own skills."

To find out more about apprenticeships at Gloucestershire College, please call the GC Business Hub team on 01452 563400 or visit www.gloscol.ac.uk

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