MEET THE TEAM
MIKE BAKER
Director

After leaving school with no qualifications and spending the first 4 years of my working life doing a variety of unfulfilling jobs I decided to make a positive change.

I enrolled onto a basic computer course at my local adult education centre. Watching the tutor of the class support her learners (especially me) and take time and patience to show each and every learner a variety of methods and solutions inspired me and I knew that I too wanted to help people.

I had now really caught the learning bug and I felt extremely motivated to achieve my goal of helping others like me. Within a few months I had achieved qualifications in Adult numeracy level 2, Adult Literacy Level 2, IBT2 and I had gained a full ECDL.

I now had a confidence and drive that I had never had before and I was ready to start my teaching journey. I approached another local training provider to seek advice and see what I could do to gain experience and hopefully in the future become an adult teacher. The managing director and quality performance manager were really supportive and saw something in me that I didn’t know I had. They talked about helping people and giving people the platform to succeed; this really appealed to me and gave me even more enthusiasm. It was then and there that I was given a fantastic opportunity that really did change my life when they asked me to work for them on a voluntary basis.

Learning from the tutors and management was a fantastic experience and I loved learning new skills and facing new challenges. The pleasure that I gained through teaching and helping full-time me great satisfaction and I knew that I was helping people to achieve their goals and aspirations in the same way that I was helped to achieve mine.

Two months after starting as a volunteer I was taken on full time as a support tutor, 5 months later I became a tutor, 7 months after that I became head of Maths and during this time I was very lucky to be nominated by my learners for Southwest Tutor Of The Year which I won! 18 months later I had the huge privilege of becoming the manager of the Exeter centre.

I decided to set up my own training centre in 2010, and Elite Training Southwest was born. I still have the same passion and desire to help people achieve their goals and I am the proof that with hard work and great support anything is possible.


GAERWEN BAHI
Business Development Manager

All my working life has involved teaching in some form or other. I spent 18 years in London teaching and working self-employed as a music teacher and also working as a tutor in a college. After 18 years it was time for a change so I moved to Exeter. Once here I worked as a tutor in an adult education centre and taught piano in the evenings. Over the next 10 years, I moved from a tutor to a centre manager and then to the position of Quality and Performance Manager for that company for 10 years. After that, I worked as a Contract Manager for a year for a different education provider in the Southwest.

As a qualified and experienced piano teacher and Management Performance Coach, I decided to become self-employed for 3 years. During this time I had worked for Elite Training in a self-employed capacity. In September of 2016, I was asked to come on board as a permanent member of staff as the Operations Manager and was delighted to accept. It’s great to work for a company that has high-quality standards and really has a great balance of putting the learners needs first whilst maintaining a successful business. Now my role has changed to Business Development Manager where we are promoting workplace training.


SARAH HARRIS
ADMINISTRATOR

I came to Elite Training South West initially from Pluss who thought I would greatly benefit in undertaking a computer course which would lead to a qualification.

I started at Elite Training as a student in March 2016 on an IT Level 2 Course, Learning with Elite was great, it allowed me to have the flexible of learning to fit in with my daily routine and personal commitments.

It was really a very good course, providing a refresher of topics, along with an insight into new ones, which after completing a 90 hour course and an exam which resulted in a City & Guilds qualification.

My time at Elite Training was highly enjoyable, the trainers were excellent, giving full support and encouraging one’s confidence.

I am extremely grateful to Elite Training and Pluss for giving me this opportunity and showing me support and encouragement, which has resulted in me now working at Elite Training South West. (You really have changed my life!)