Meet our latest Apprenticeship Award winners!

Updated: 02 Jul 2020

Motor technician, Max, and business travel consultant, Lucia, share their excitement as they're awarded a special Society grant to help them embark on the next step in their careers.

Introduced in 2017, the Oddfellows Apprenticeship Educational Awards provide students with £250 for each year of their course, to give a helping hand with the costs associated with work-based education.

We're thrilled to announce that members Max and Lucia are the award's latest winners. 

Max in the workshop, where he's most likely to be found!

Max Parkin, 20, a member of the Star of Mottingham Branch of the Oddfellows, and previously a student at The Leigh UTC in Dartford, is embarking on a three-year apprenticeship to become a Car Technician at Toyota Tunbridge Wells. 

He says: "I’ve always been fascinated by cars. Since I was a kid, I’ve helped my dad out in the garage, passing him tools and asking questions. He’s a huge inspiration to me, and since I began my apprenticeship, he’s also got a job at Toyota, so now we are colleagues!

"I’m extremely grateful for this award. It’s been a huge help already, as I live half an hour away from work so it’s putting towards petrol costs and tools of my own. It’s certainly a weight off my mind."

Lucia wants to explore every inch of the world – including the sea bed!

Lucia Bowler, 19, a member of the St Edmundsbury Branch of the Oddfellows, and previously a student at West Suffolk College in Bury St Edmunds, is enjoying her apprenticeship in Travel and Tourism at Clarity Business Travel.

She says: "Every day is different, and I love the challenge. I've always loved to travel, so to work in the travel industry is a dream come true. One of my favourite places to visit is Shanghai, and I'm hoping to save as much as I can to help me experience more of the world, so I can provide a better service for clients.

"I was over the moon to be chosen for this award. My Grandad, who signed me up to the Oddfellows a month after I was born, has always been a huge inspiration to me, and told me to always follow my dreams. He passed away a few years ago, so I'd like to think he'd be proud of me now!"

Being able to support our members on their career paths is a huge honour. David Randall, Grand Master

The decision on who receives an Oddfellows Apprenticeship Educational Award is made by the Society's Fraternal Board. Grand Master of the Oddfellows, David Randall, said: "An apprenticeship can be a fantastic stepping stone towards a great career. I completed an apprenticeship to become a Carpenter and Joiner myself, before moving into management in my early 20s, so I know how rewarding they can be. Being able to support our members on their career paths is a huge honour and we couldn’t be more proud of their achievements so far. It’s wonderful seeing our younger members flourish, and we wish them all the best in their future careers.”

About the Oddfellows Educational Awards

Help for apprentices
Each year, we grant up to three Apprenticeship Educational Awards consisting of £250 per year for the duration (maximum three years) of an apprentice’s apprenticeship. 

Help for first degree students
Each year, nationally the Oddfellows grants up to three First Degree Course Educational Awards consisting of £900 per year for the duration of a student’s first degree programme.

To find out how to apply and to check if you're eligible, visit our Oddfellows Educational Awards page.