Hair and beauty Apprenticeships are best in the UK

Truro and Penwith College is officially a cut above the rest, having been recognised as the best provider of hair and beauty Apprenticeships in the UK.

The College's hair and beauty team celebrate at the AAC Apprenticeship Awards

The team celebrate with Alan Woods OBE, CEO at awarding body VTCT

The College attended the 2020 AAC Apprenticeship Awards at the ICC Birmingham on Tuesday night, where it was awarded Hair and Beauty Apprenticeship Provider of the Year.

The annual Awards, organised by FE Week and the Association of Education and Learning Providers, is open to all Apprenticeship providers and employers across the country, and celebrates the very best education providers the UK has to offer.

Truro and Penwith College was shortlisted alongside Wales-based ISA Training, which finished as runner up in the coveted award category.

Hayley McKinstry, Programme Team Leader for Hair, Beauty and Complementary Therapies at Truro and Penwith College, said: “It is an honour to have won this national award for Hair and Beauty Apprenticeship provider of the Year. It showcases the hard work and dedication that the team put into the delivery and support offered throughout our Apprenticeship provision.

“The Award also highlights the tremendous effort the team has put in to maintain an Outstanding level of quality for each learner and every employer, throughout a period where numbers have grown considerably”.

Ofsted Outstanding Truro and Penwith College has seen significant growth in its Apprenticeship provision, with student numbers more than doubling over a five-year period. The College’s hair and beauty department is one that has been at the forefront of this growth with a staggering 1125% increase in student numbers over the same period. 

The award win comes in the same term that Truro College’s hair and beauty department unveiled new salons and training rooms, which have undergone a significant investment and modernisation programme, bringing kit and equipment well up to and beyond current industry standard levels.

The College’s nomination highlighted its partnership approach; working with local employers and awarding body VTCT to ensure employers are fully up-to-date with the latest training. This includes providing the opportunity to attend mock assessments so learners can get the best possible support and development in pursuit of professional qualifications.

Judges from FE Week and the Association of Education and Learning Providers noted the opportunity employers have been given to influence the development of a Summer School programme for Apprentices at the College. The programme now takes place annually over an eight-week period and focuses on developing knowledge, understanding and skills in cutting and colouring. Apprentice feedback from this programme is extremely positive, improving confidence and effectiveness in the workplace while employers report an increase in productivity.

Staff and students celebrating the shortlist announcement

Staff and students celebrate the shortlist announcement

National recognition for the College’s Hair and Beauty Apprenticeships comes just months after the latest data published by the Department for Education (DfE) demonstrated that achievement rates for all Apprenticeship programmes place Truro and Penwith College in the top 10% of all 173 college providers nationally, with achievement rates more than 12% above the national average of all providers in the UK.

The College also received exceptional scores from 452 Cornish employers who took part in in the DfE’s Employer Satisfaction Survey in November. The results of the survey ranked The College as one of the top Apprenticeship providers in the South West with an employer satisfaction rating of 97.1%.

For more information about Apprenticeship training at the College visit or contact the Apprenticeship team on 01872 242711 or