Meet the Speakers
Chief Executive Officer
Occupational Awards Limited
Jan Richardson-Wilde - Conference Chair
Jan has worked in Education and Training for over 35 years and has a wide range of experience in strategic and operational management of training programmes with colleges, private training providers, local authorities the voluntary sector and not for profit organisations. She has extensive experience of quality and curriculum design and delivery. A strong advocate for vocational and technical education she is an Apprenticeship Ambassador for the Yorkshire and Humber region. Jan is qualified in quality assurance and improvement has a degree in Business Management, a Post Graduate Certificate in Education and an MA in Leadership, Management and Learning from the university of Keele. Jan has spent 15 years as an additional inspector with Ofsted. She has extensive experience as a non executive Director of a number of organisations. Currently a Director and member of the Board for the National Skills Academy for Food and Drink (NSAFD), governor of Darlington College, Jan was a non executive director for 10 years of the Learning and Skills Council, which included 3 years on their Audit Committee, 4 years as a Governor and Vice-Chair of Yorkshire Coast college and chair of the Merger Committee with the Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education (GIFHE).
Business Development Director
Cassandra is the Business Development Director at Metaverse Learning, a pioneering provider of immersive learning and training solutions through extended reality, including Virtual Reality (VR), Virtual Environments (VE) and Augmented Reality (AR). She is passionate about the future of education and how digital innovation can be incorporated into teaching practices to maximise learning outcomes.
With over 15 years of experience in education and technology, Cassandra has contributed her expertise across seven colleges in Warwickshire and Worcestershire, excelling in both management and marketing roles.
Prior to working for Metaverse Learning, Cassandra was Business Development Director for a Microsoft partner and played a pivotal role in establishing key relationships within the industry. During this time, she led initiatives to plan, develop, and implement an all-in-one event planning platform tailored for educational use, showcasing her commitment to driving technological advancements in the field of education.
Director Of Operations and Quality
Althaus - Ofsted Grade 1
Althaus’s mission is to ‘unleash the digital leaders of tomorrow’; offering apprenticeships in emerging and rapidly growing digital / tech sectors using a combination of online delivery (SMART classrooms, webinars & digital content) and physical classroom-based learning.
We believe that high-quality digital learning will enable our learners to study in an environment familiar to them and their chosen subject area. We want to ensure our learners have both the technical knowledge and the ‘real life’ skills required to thrive in their chosen sectors; equipping them with the skills to become leaders of the future.
Vikki is chair of award-winning training provider, Acacia Training which she co-founded in 2000 and CEO of Vedere Group, and education and health group of businesses. Vikki has also held numerous education roles, including with Ofsted, and voluntary roles such as Vice-Chair of Staffordshire & Stoke provider network, chair of governors with schools and governor with Staffordshire University. She also has vast experience as an executive director and CEO of global listed business. Vikki is a true believer that education is the key to changing lives, and our world, which is her key motivator. She cites Acacia Training becoming a B-corp as one of their greatest recent achievements, and a demonstration of how being values lead businesses can have a positive impact.
Director of Apprenticeships
Over the last 17 years, Jake has carried out a range of roles in some of the UK’s top awarding organisations. Since the reforms of 2015, Jake has specialised in apprenticeships and, in particular, End-Point Assessment. In this time, he has contributed his expertise to over twenty individual trailblazer groups, as well as government think-tanks and industry forums. He is deeply passionate about technical and vocational education and the value it brings to individuals, employers, the economy and society as a whole. DSW provides End-Point Assessment services to over 3,000 employers across 38 apprenticeship standards. Providing a pragmatic, ‘human’ touch, they seek to work with all stakeholders to remove unnecessary barriers and create engaging experiences –and positive outcomes – for apprentices. As DSW’s Director of Apprenticeships, Jake engages regularly with employers, training providers and apprentices to provide a fair, robust and consistent EPA that gives all apprentices equal opportunity to succeed.
COO / Founder / MD
Apprentify - Ofsted Grade 1
After working in digital marketing for over 20 years, I founded Apprentify to answer one simple question: how can UK businesses harness digital talent to improve their business?
Technical requirements and digital marketing have advanced significantly over the years, and this trend will continue. Although we live in a digital world, I could see that digital talent and training were still based on old methods.
It is my mission to build the best team of apprenticeship, digital marketing, technical, and learning experts in the UK. I am accountable to the team, and we are accountable to our customers, employers and apprentices. To achieve this, we focus resources, time, and effort on delivering the best digital marketing / technical apprenticeship program. The key to this is career development and business improvement.
I am responsible for the overall performance, success and direction of Apprentify with its digital marketing / technical apprenticeships. Leadership by example played a key role in the business's success, as did maintaining a climate where everyone lived by the business' values. By avoiding the noise of business steering around politics and listening and questioning I am able to drive the real business drivers; that's what challenges me.
Apprentify's goal is to unleash true potential in the digital world by energising talent. We were founded to never sit back and to give every learner the power, resources and knowledge to drive themselves and their business forward through digital excellence.
I am a collaborative MD who magnifies the talent around to ensure that we deliver the very best for our customers.
As the Executive Director at SCL Professional, I am passionate about driving transformative change and enhancing organisational and individual performance through the power of apprenticeships. I am fully committed to developing collaborative partnerships with employers to support the delivery of sustainable high-impact programmes.
With a proven track record in strategic leadership, I thrive in dynamic environments where innovation and adaptability are key. Together, let's embark on a journey of excellence and make a lasting impact in the apprenticeship and lifelong learning landscape.
BVDE Quality Solutions
Barbara is an education and skills consultant with over 30 years of experience in the Further Education and Skills sector. She has worked in Colleges, Adult Education, large Independent Training Providers and Universities in many senior leadership positions covering a wide range of programmes and delivery types.
Barbara is passionate about teaching and learning and about developing practitioners and leaders so they can excel in their roles. She has helped many organisations advance their Quality Assurance and Development activities through practical and impactful approaches. Her work is centered around the power of collaboration, reflection and action. She believes that high levels of challenge and support are essential for outstanding performance and achievement.
Barbara is Chair of the Society for Education and Training and is working across various projects with the Education and Training Foundation, the Association of Colleges and many . She is a Pacific Institute Lead with Impact facilitator, mentor and Executive Coach.
She is the founder and director of BVDE Quality Solutions Ltd, an Education and Skills consultancy business www.bvde.co.uk
Apprenticeship Group (Directory & Conference)
Since 2010 Lindsay has been supporting the Apprenticeship Sector with both her Apprenticeship Conferences and the Apprenticeship Directory. She takes pride in connecting people and providing platforms for subject matter experts to connect and share knowledge.
Director of Apprenticeship Quality and Regulation - Associate Professor of Educational Practice
BPP Education Group
David Woof - JP SFHEA FSET FCCT FRSA
David Wooff is the Director of Apprenticeship Quality and Regulation, and an Associate Professor of Educational Practice for the BPP Group. Over the past 25 years he has worked across the education sector in Apprenticeships, Secondary Education, Further Education, Higher Education and Teacher Training. He holds fellowships of the Charted College of Teaching (FCCT); Society of Education and Training (FSET), Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) and he is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA). He is responsible for the quality and compliance of apprenticeship programmes across the BPP Group, where 13,000 apprentices are studying programmes aligned to 47 apprenticeship standards.
Head of Client Solutions
With over two decades of sales experience, I have consistently delivered on sales strategy and exceeded targets. I am skilled in implementing CRM systems, creating effective sales funnels, and coaching high-performing sales teams to success.
My passion for learning and development has driven me to continuously seek out new methods and technologies to improve sales processes and enhance customer experiences.
As a passionate apprentice, I have completed five apprenticeships ranging from a level 2 in customer service to a level 7 in senior leadership I am confident in my abilities to make real change in our sector.
Director of Policy, Strategic Partnerships and Stakeholder Engagement
City & Guilds
Defining and reviewing strategic policy and evidence-based research for the leading vocational awarding body in the UK, and centre of excellence for worldwide vocational assessment. Leads on learning and assessment research and quality assurance, policy and principles for effective assessment, innovation and fit for purpose application of learning and assesssment technologies and associated business transformation.