Dr Mandy Crawford-Lee has considerable experience of leading and negotiating skills policy, strategic planning and performance management in economic development, vocational education and training reform. She is a sound and respected resource for those involved in the development and delivery of apprenticeships at the higher level having led national policy, managed the Coalition Government’s successful Higher Apprenticeship Fund and revised the Specification of Apprenticeship Standard in England (SASE) leading to the opening up of pathways in higher level learning for apprentices beyond Level 3 and into a work-based route through to professional, senior technical and managerial occupations and, where appropriate, professional accreditation. Having worked extensively with government departments, providers in further education, higher education institutions, awarding organisations, professional bodies and public and private sector employers, Mandy has developed effective business and commercial partnerships. Mandy specialises in research, leadership of strategic projects and in skills policy advice, development & implementation including advocacy and lobbying. Higher and degree apprenticeships and higher technical, professional education and skills are Mandy’s sphere of influence and she writes and speaks regularly on skills and apprenticeship policy.
Dr Nicky Westwood has 19 years’ experience across varied strategic and operational roles within the HE sector and a previous Nursing/Nurse Education background. Nicky has extensive strategic and operational leadership experience at both Institutional and Faculty/School level across all aspects of apprenticeship provision and development, recruitment, employer engagement, inclusive curriculum design, programme validations (including Professional, Statutory, Regulatory Body requirements- PSRB), quality monitoring (continuous monitoring) and enhancement, quality assurance, inclusive learning and teaching pedagogy, inclusive assessment and interprofessional education. She has been instrumental in the development and validation of apprenticeship and non-apprenticeship programmes including those with PSRB requirements and has led on the development of a variety of new programmes working closely with programme teams and wider University, employers and local Authorities. This has focused from the development of business case approval through to delivery ensuring that apprenticeship programme curriculums are fit for purpose meeting all apprenticeship requirements and providing flexible inclusive routes into HE and meeting employers workforce development needs. Further to this she has worked collaboratively to strategically lead apprenticeship restructures, apprenticeship lifecycle development, Governance and the development, embedding and review of processes, policy and guidance aligned to HE programmes and apprenticeship provision. She has led on the implementation of robust mechanisms to monitor and enhance compliance and quality enhancement across apprenticeship provision for both IFATE, ESFA and Ofsted and PSRB requirements. This has included the development of robust institutional action plans to address areas of risk, development of data dashboards, RAG rated data and risk register. Nicky has led on the development of CPD for all staff aligned to apprenticeship and non-apprenticeship provision, peer review /observation processes, chaired University level committees and has been strategic lead and nominee for Ofsted inspections and all external monitoring, audit requirements for apprenticeship provision and contract and bid management. She remains a NMC registrant, and her Doctoral Thesis focused on: Student nurses’ experiences of mentors’ judgements of their clinical competence: An Interpretative Phenomenological Study.
Rebecca Rhodes is the former Head of Apprenticeship Funding Policy Implementation at the Skills Funding Agency developing and implementing Apprenticeship Reform programmes including the levy, funding caps, funding eligibility and new Apprenticeship Funding Rules. Rebecca works extensively with employers of all sizes in the public and private sector on their apprenticeship and skills programmes and also with employers and universities to set up or expand their apprenticeship delivery. Also the former lead for degree apprenticeship policy and former Head of Localism and separately, sector skills, developing and implementing City Deals and Sector Skills Agreements on behalf of government to meet local and sector skills shortages. She is also a former learning and development and organisational development specialist in the a range of private sector companies & sectors. Since 2016, Rebecca has been leading on the development and delivery of UVAC’s technical webinar series and template design and production.
Tammie Harwin had 10 years in public sector roles, with 8 years spent at the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) and Learning and Skills Council (LSC). While at the SFA, Tammie worked within the Reforms and Standards team to develop apprenticeship reform policy, including the levy. A specialist in working with ‘trailblazer’ employer groups to develop the new apprenticeship standards alongside other key projects she has worked with some of the UK’s largest businesses to develop and account manage their apprenticeship contracts. She has delivered numerous bespoke apprenticeship projects, helping employers to effectively utilise their apprenticeship levy, and supported provider and other stakeholders to work effectively in the new apprenticeship and skills environment.
Jane Welbourn, has considerable experience as a senior lecturer and course leader working in the field of events, tourism, hospitality and language. She was the course leader for The Professional Diploma in Leisure Retail Management at Leeds Beckett University working with industry partners to develop continuing professional development programmes. She has almost 20 years’ experience as a training consultant designing and delivering interactive programmes for international organisations aimed at diverse multicultural audiences. Jane has a wide range of teaching experiences in multi-cultural contexts and worked with the Josoor Institute in Qatar for the delivery and legacy of the Qatar 2022 world cup. Jane is also an eternal examiner for Queen Margaret University, India.