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Finalist Katie focused on hitting Rhondda Cynon Taf’s climate change targets

Higher Apprentice Katie Trembath is playing a key role in helping Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council to meet challenging decarbonisation and climate change targets.

As a carbon reduction officer, Katie, 27, from Clydach Vale, is involved in developing large scale renewable energy projects, including a six megawatt solar farm and hydroelectric schemes, as well as a range of other work to reduce the council’s carbon footprint.

Skills and knowledge gained during her Higher Apprenticeship in Project Management, delivered by ALS Training, and a Prince2 qualification are key to her role. A postgraduate degree to further support her work role is also a future option.

Now, Katie has been shortlisted for the prestigious Apprenticeship Awards Cymru 2024 as a finalist in the Tomorrow’s Talent category.

Highlight of the year for apprentices, employers and work-based learning providers and practitioners, the awards are organised by the Welsh Government and supported by the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW). Headline sponsor is EAL.

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony to be held at ICC Wales, Newport on March 22, 2024. The awards highlight the outstanding achievements of employers, apprentices and work-based learning practitioners.

Katie has exceeded expectations by managing projects and finding innovative solutions to challenges as the council seeks to become a carbon neutral organisation by 2030. 

Having achieved an Open University Degree in Environmental Science and Geography, Katie was recruited by the council as a graduate energy and carbon reduction officer in June, 2022. She previously worked in retail management for seven years, achieving an Apprenticeship in Retail Management.

Passionate about carbon reduction and renewable energy, she shares best practice with other councils and works with stakeholders including the Carbon Trust, the Welsh Government Energy Service, landowners and engineers.

“I have always been interested in renewable energy and carbon reduction, which are very topical with the Welsh Government pushing for Wales to be net zero public sector by 2030,” said Katie.

“The higher apprenticeship is definitely helping my work and is perfect for project management. I want to progress my career whilst also making a difference in the community where I live.”

Jon Arroyo, RCT Council’s energy and carbon reduction manager, said: “Katie has proven to be a great asset to the Corporate Estates Energy Team and will have an exciting future working with new and innovative technologies to meet the net zero challenge.

“Her dedication and commitment to her role have been exemplary and she will surely play a vital role addressing the world’s greatest climate change challenge.”

Economy Minister Vaughan Gething congratulated Katie and all the other finalists. “Today’s apprentices will be tomorrow’s specialists, and Apprenticeship Awards Cymru allows us to recognise apprentices, work-based learning practitioners, and employers that have gone above and beyond. Their tenacity, passion, and commitment to growing their own careers, the careers of others, and the larger Welsh economy is inspiring. I wish each of the finalists the best of luck at the awards and with their future endeavours.”

Congratulating the finalists, Al Parkes, managing director at EAL, said: “As the specialist awarding organisation and skills partner for the engineering and manufacturing industry, apprenticeships in Wales are especially important to us.

“Apprenticeships play an important role in supporting personal progress through career opportunities and a sense of achievement, while ensuring that employers have the right skills at the right time to keep up with evolving industry needs.

“EAL is committed to encouraging employers to take on apprentices. Marking the achievements of employers, apprentices and work-based learning practitioners at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru is vital to this.”

For more information about recruiting an apprentice, visit: https://gov.wales/apprenticeships-genius-decision or call 03000 603000.

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