21 year old Clodagh Finnegan, who completed a Hospitality apprenticeship at Solihull College & University Centre with Amadeus food has recently impressed all at her employer and secured an award at the NEC Group’s Employee Awards night – The Brilliance Awards.
The Brilliance Awards allow employees of the NEC Group to be nominated by their colleagues for a number of awards associated to the NEC values including customer, spirit, energise, teamwork, team of the year and newcomer of the year. Clodagh was nominated for the ‘customer’ award and received more nominations than anyone else in any other category and included nominations from other areas of the business proving she has not only impressed in her home venue of the Genting Arena but in other areas of the business also. Clodagh commented “I was so happy, I didn’t believe it. Everyone was really happy for me and I’m still speechless now.” Clodagh collected her award and then returned to work that evening as there was an event she was working on at the Genting Arena; proving her commitment and hardworking nature.
Clodagh was part of the Amadeus Catering Apprenticeship at Solihull College & University Centre which gives individuals the opportunity to join the multi-award winning venue caterer, Amadeus. The apprenticeship aims to develop the hospitality skills of the apprentices by gaining not only industry relevant qualifications but also industry work experience. Clodagh explains “After completing a college course I wanted to earn money but also felt that I needed to gain more qualifications to progress in my career so I felt that an apprenticeship was a good option for me. Whilst completing my apprenticeship I’ve been able to learn a lot more about the business including purchasing, marketing and staffing as well as working across different venues; I’ve served tea and coffee to guests and then I’ve served a sit-down dinner to over 1000 guests too.
“My tutors on the course at the College were great; they understand that you’re adults. I feel I now have a good knowledge of the industry and I want to keep working my way up.”
Clodagh started learning her trade as a waitress in the hospitality department before starting to work in a number of the NEC Group venues learning a wide range of different skills.
Clodagh’s manager Graeme Ellis, Hospitality and Catering Manager at Amadeus, Genting Arena commented:
“I am still astonished with how much progress Clodagh has made since joining Amadeus. I still remember her first shift as a shy, nervous little thing that wouldn’t say boo to a goose. Fast forward a couple of years and she has gone from strength to strength.
Clodagh has a unique ability of keeping calm and taking everything in her stride, no matter how much responsibility she is given or how difficult the circumstances are. On top of the valuable experience she has earned, the skills she has learnt at the college have been first class and she displays these on a day to day basis. The regular meetings we have with her tutor identify with how well she is doing and where she can improve and have given Clodagh great direction, which I know she refers to regularly.
Clodagh is now a full time member of our team and regularly works at a Supervisory level responsible for the successful running of a section or even on occasions a whole restaurant being responsible for 10 or more waiters. This is fantastic progress, which was recognised by her peers at the recent Brilliance awards, winning the Customer Service award voted for by fellow employees of the NEC Group. A phenomenal achievement, well done Clodagh, we are all so proud of you!”
For more information on the Apprenticeship scheme with Amadeus at Solihull visit the Apprenticeships page of the website or call 0121 678 7000.