More than 350 individuals gathered at the prestigious University of Bradford’s Great Hall on Tuesday, 4 July, to honour and recognise young people and their dedicated supporters from across the Bradford District. The annual SkillsHouse Careers and Technical Education Awards not only served as a platform for celebration but also as an opportunity to express gratitude towards educators and local organisations for their unwavering commitment to nurturing the skills of the youth, equipping them for a successful future.

This year’s event witnessed a remarkable surge in participation, with over 100 additional nominations compared to the previous year. Attendees were treated to captivating performances by renowned dance troupes Hanson Dance Company and CC Dance Company. The musical duo Asher Titre and Lauren Southgate from Healthy Minds moved the audience with their heartfelt rendition of “Every Mind is Different.”

Councillor Imran Khan, Bradford Council’s portfolio holder for Education, Employment, and Skills, expressed his admiration for the achievements of young people in the District, highlighting the significance of the SkillsHouse Careers and Technical Education Awards. He extended his personal congratulations to all the finalists, acknowledging their incredible accomplishments and emphasising the importance of reflecting upon their remarkable journeys throughout the year.

Khan stated, “It is essential that we maintain and nurture the outstanding relationships we have built with local businesses through the SkillsHouse Careers & Technical Education Partnership. This ensures that we provide our young people with the necessary skills to unlock their full potential.”

The ceremony recognized outstanding individuals across various categories. In the Primary Learner of the Year category, Riley Whittaker-Duffy was lauded for his exceptional team-playing abilities, while Isabella Hall shone as a remarkable talent, earning the Shining Star award. Zakirah Hussain received recognition for her outstanding leadership skills, and Oan Saeed was commended as The Resolver. Raheema Hafejee’s remarkable career focus earned her the title of Most Career-Focused learner.

Rachel Hoyland was recognised as the Educator of the Year, a testament to her dedication and excellence in teaching.

Hays Recruitment, represented by Jonathan Gascoigne, was honoured as the Outstanding Business of the Year for their exemplary contributions to the community.

The Sustainability Champions Awards were presented to Sadoon Raqeed and Sabee Shah for their efforts in recovering energy and saving time.

Outstanding learners in various fields were acknowledged, including Shane Jarvis (Business), Kara Colbeck (Health and Social Care), Duhaa Hasan Khan (Public Services and Law), Amin Hussain (Built Environment), Gilda DeOliveira (Hospitality, Tourism, and Sport), Junaid Ayub (Transport, Distribution, and Logistics), Carys Marshall (Creative Industries), Amy Kelsall (Computing, Science, and Environmental Technologies), and Matthew Thornton (Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering).

The Bradford Essential Skills Learner of the Year category recognised individuals who displayed exceptional skills. Emma Charnock excelled in Flexibility and Adaptability, while Emma Kershaw exhibited outstanding Social and Cross-Cultural Skills. Lewis Sanderson was applauded for his Leadership and Responsibility, and Alisha Ubaid received recognition for Initiative and Self-Direction. Matthew Thompson’s Critical Thinking and Problem-Solving abilities were acknowledged, and Umaimah Siddique stood out for her Creativity and Innovation. Rabea Sultana was commended for her Productivity and Accountability, and Zama Abdullah was recognised for Communication and Collaboration skills.

The Longstanding Contribution Award was presented to Paul Birtles, Nick Garthwaite, and Heather Savage in recognition of their sustained dedication and remarkable contributions.

Looking ahead, following the resounding success of this year’s awards, nominations for the 2024 SkillsHouse CTE Awards will open in September. The SkillsHouse Careers and Technical Education program is an integral part of Bradford Council’s employment and skills service. To learn more about SkillsHouse and how to get involved, visit their official website at or email

The SkillsHouse Careers and Technical Education Awards continue to shine a spotlight on the exceptional talent and dedication of young individuals in the Bradford District. By recognising their achievements and honouring those who support them, the awards inspire and encourage the development of vital skills needed for a prosperous future.