Level 2 Diploma in Food and Beverage Services
Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Supervision and Leadership
"St Helens College has helped me so much to get where I am today. The tutors were amazing and I couldn't thank them enough for the time they gave me to progress to where I am today."
Stephanie Birchall began her career as an Assistant Events Manager after studying at St Helens College. She studied her level 2 Apprenticeship in Food and Beverage services before advancing on to the level 3 Apprenticeship in Supervision and Leadership.
Stephanie who now works for the Mercue hotel chain, which provides three and four star experiences in over 750 hotels worldwide. Within in her current role as Assistant Events Manger, Stephanie is responsible for organising private dinners, conferences and weddings at the Mercure Haydock Hotel.
Speaking about her role she said, “I am really enjoying my job role since joining Mercure over twelve months ago, although it’s a challenging role and very demanding at times it is also very rewarding. I feel like I’ve progressed so much and just want to keep learning new skills and develop myself in the industry. It’s amazing to be a master of ceremonies for a wedding and seeing the Bride and Groom so happy with their day, it makes me realise why I’ve always wanted to work within events.”
During her time at the College, Stephanie also worked part time at the Colours restaurant, where she was able to gain valuable knowledge and experience in the hospitality industry.
While studying her level 3 course, Stephanie was selected to represent the college at the Battle of North West competition as team leader. For the competition, colleges across the Liverpool City Region came together to showcase their catering and hospitality skills. After beating off tough competition to win gold Stephanie was head hunted by industry expert and Chef Paul Askew to take up the position as Chef De Rang at his newly opened restaurant The Art School, in Liverpool.
Paul said, “From seeing how motivated, hardworking and dedicated Stephanie was at the competition, meant that she had already caught our eye as candidate based on the calibre of employee we are looking for. She really impressed us at interview.”
Talking about her time at the college Stephanie said, “St Helens College has helped me so much to get where I am today. The tutors were amazing and I couldn't thank them enough for the time they gave me to progress to where I am today. They gave me work experience and life experience”.
Stephanie added, “I would say take every opportunity as it comes, if you have the opportunity to study the course and gain the right experience then it’s a win, win situation. Never say no to any opportunities, because everything happens for a reason and I definitely wouldn't be where I am today if I didn't believe that”.
It was experienced gained at The Art School restaurant that then led to Stephanie to gain confidence, work experience and skills to allow her to progress in her career and move into her management position at Mercure Hotel.