STEPHANIE Lomax, an apprentice for UPM Shotton Paper who is studying at Deeside College, has been awarded a City and Guilds Medal for Excellence in recognition of her exceptional work and dedication to her training.

The 17-year-old from Connah’s Quay enrolled at Deeside College as a full-time learner and followed the Performing Engineering Operations course at Level 2 which gave her a broad range of engineering skills.

Having shown a real flair for the subject and after securing the title of Deeside College Engineering Student of the Year, Stephanie was recommended to paper manufacturers UPM as a potential apprentice.

After successfully completing the selection process, Stephanie began the first year of her apprenticeship in September and is continuing to attend the College full-time for the first year of her training.

Jason Roberts, Stephanie’s Engineering Tutor at Deeside College said: “Stephanie has an eye for detail and the work she produces is outstanding and far advanced of her years. We are delighted that her efforts, commitment and talent have been recognised with such a prestigious award at a national level. She is an inspiration to fellow learners and this achievement is thoroughly deserved.”

David Ingham, general manager for UPM Shotton, said: “We’re delighted that Stephanie has achieved such a renowned award within her first year of apprenticeship. UPM is also delighted to be able continue its long standing support of its apprenticeships.”

City and Guilds is the UK’s leading awarding body for work-related qualifications and has been recognising for over 125 years exceptional students whose portfolio and achievements put them above the rest.

A thrilled Stephanie, who collected her award at a ceremony in Cardiff Bay, said: “I am delighted to have won this award. I chose to study Engineering because I had always been interested in how things worked, how they went together and how to fix them. Securing the apprenticeship at UPM has been great, I am well supported, I work with some really talented Engineers and I get to further develop my skills by learning on-the-job and at Deeside College.”