Students win prestigious accolades in the 2021 BTEC Awards

The exceptional achievements of BTEC Level 3 IT Diploma student Tristan Young and BTEC Level 3 Travel and Tourism Diploma student Deanna Nicholas, were celebrated this week with prestigious Silver and Bronze BTEC Learner of the Year 2021 awards.

The students’ hard work and dedication were celebrated at the 11th anniversary of Pearson’s annual BTEC Awards hosted online on 7th July 2021 at 2pm.


Tristan Young won the Silver BTEC IT and Computing Learner of the Year Award


Deanna Nicholas won the Bronze BTEC Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Learner of the Year Award

Tristan, who previously attended Liskeard School, was recognised by his lecturers for striving for excellence in all class work, assignments, exams and other activities, as well as achieving distinctions in all assignments and exams and supporting his peers.

Tristan’s IT Lecturer Jim Stoneleigh, shared: “Tristan is always willing to support others, listen, question and provide his opinion on all topics. He does all of this with a smile on his face and good humour and he really deserves this award for two years of extremely hard work. Tristan will soon be embarking on a career in software development and I see a very bright future for him. Congratulations and well done!”

Tristan with IT and Computing Lecturers Jim, Paul and Sam

Tristan commented: “I am very happy to have been presented with the Silver BTEC IT and Computing Learner of the Year Award, I was honoured that my teachers nominated me, and I would like to thank them very much for doing so. They have been incredibly encouraging along the way; they supported and guided me through my course and this award recognises their efforts over the last two years as much as mine.

“My experience at Callywith has been very positive. The BTEC IT course has continued to stretch and build my knowledge of computing providing me with practical knowledge, experience, and skills. Studying A Level Maths alongside this, has really helped with the coding and algorithms side of IT. I challenged myself to study both courses and alongside the high level of teaching at Callywith, has enabled me to achieve excellent grades. I have made some good friends and I’ve really enjoyed my time at Callywith.

“My BTEC course has been invaluable in helping me to secure a degree level apprenticeship at a local IT company. Over the next 4 years, I will be working and studying part time at university to complete my bachelor’s degree. After which I hope to develop my career in the IT world.”

Deanna, who previously attended Liskeard School, was recognised by her lecturers for her extremely high standard of work throughout her course, despite becoming ill with Covid-19.

Deanna’s Travel and Tourism Lecturer Helen Hart, shared: “Deanna is one of the most extraordinary, exemplary, committed, and proactive students I have ever had the pleasure of teaching. She always produces work to the highest standard and demonstrated a depth of knowledge, understanding and capability that is rarely demonstrated at this level. Deanna has continuously demonstrated this throughout her course, during both lockdowns as well as during the period of her being extremely ill with Covid-19 and continued this exemplary level of work whilst recovering.”

Deanna commented: “I feel really honoured to have even been nominated for the Bronze BTEC Hospitality, Travel and Tourism Learner of the Year Award, let alone actually winning. Callywith College has been a great place to study for my BTEC Travel and Tourism Diploma. The course remained easily accessible during lockdown and we were in constant contact with our teachers. They were also incredibly supportive of me while I recovered from Covid-19 myself.

“Now that I have finished my course, I have been lucky enough to have been offered full time hours in the restaurant that I have worked at for the last 3 years where I have gained experience of working with and serving people of all ages. The restaurant has plans to build a venue for weddings and parties and I am really looking forward to the opportunity to put my event planning coursework into practice. When I have gained more experience in all these aspects, I would love to move on to a bigger set-up, like a large resort.”

Commenting on the BTEC students’ achievements, Callywith Assistant Principal Allyn Jefferies said: “We're all hugely proud of everything Tristan and Deanna have achieved here at the College and it's so inspiring to see how hard they have worked and how generous they have been in offering to help their peers. We look forward to seeing where all of their efforts take them in life.”

Co-hosted by presenter of the United View, YouTube influencer and BTEC alumnus and ambassador, Flex and sports presenter and events host, Gemma Care, 19 category award winners were celebrated from around the UK and internationally in subjects such as Health and Social Care, Performing Arts, Engineering, IT, Business and Sport.

BTEC alumni including Academy Award-winning producer and Head of Film and Animation at ScreenSkills Gareth Ellis-Unwin, entrepreneur and founder of SB.TV Jamal Edwards MBE, and award-winning actress Lucy Fallon were among those also presenting awards.

Cindy Rampersaud, Senior Vice President, BTEC and Apprenticeships at Pearson, said: “2021 has been another extraordinary year for our BTEC learners, tutors, teachers, colleges and schools and I am delighted that today we are able to come together and celebrate this year’s winners - and all of the individuals who will be awarded a BTEC qualification this year. The hard work and commitment demonstrated by our award winners, all of whom have achieved great things, during a time of unprecedented disruption, is extraordinary and I am proud we are able to celebrate their achievements.” 

Nearly a million learners across the globe completed BTEC courses over the past year; the career-focused qualifications are a vital route for those pursuing careers in sectors such as IT, business, the creative industries, healthcare, engineering, construction and future industries. This is especially important in the current context as the UK responds to the global pandemic and looks to kickstart projects to speed economic recovery.

Jonathan Ledger, Skills Specialist at The Department for International Trade commented: “I must emphasise the importance of BTEC as a career-focused type of qualification and that for me is key.  This is all about delivering the right skills to the right people at the right time in the right way and BTEC qualifications do just that. For me, BTEC qualifications are a game changer. They change lives and they help people improve and contribute to business and society in a big way.

“A huge congratulations once again to all the winners and all of the nominees.”