Team

Ascentis are passionate about customer service, and keep the learner at the heart of everything we do. Meet our dedicated and specialist team and our sector expert Board of Trustees.

Leadership Team

Fiona Lugiano

Fiona Lugiano

Group DCEO

Paul Howarth

Paul Howarth

Group Commercial Director

Phil Wilkinson

Phil Wilkinson

Group CEO

Trustees

Alison Bolton

Alison Bolton

Trustee

Alison has been a Trustee and a member of both the AVA and AO Committee at Ascentis since June 2013. Having spent over 25 years working in Higher Education admissions, Alison has more recently been undertaking project and support work in a number of Universities in both the North East and North West of England. She has been very happy to be part of an organisation supporting opportunities to enhance lives through education.

Read more
Alison Rushton

Alison Rushton

Deputy Chair of the Board

Jessica Robinson

Jessica Robinson

Trustee

Jessica has been a Trustee and a member of the AVA and AO Committee at Ascentis since May 2022. Jessica has 25 years of experience in Higher Education management and administration, having worked in several universities across England and Scotland. With a background in quality assurance and compliance, she has held a number of senior roles and is currently the Director (Academic Quality and Development) at the University of Cumbria. She is passionate about the role that education can play in opening up opportunities for individuals and communities. She is pleased to be working with Ascentis, which is helping to transform lives through education.

Read more
Michael McTague

Michael McTague

Trustee

Paul Rowe

Paul Rowe

Chair of the Access Validating Agency Committee

Paul has worked in international education and transnational education (TNE) partnerships throughout his career, initially teaching overseas in Spain and Japan for 8 years. On returning to the U.K., he used his background in teaching TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) in a large Further Education college managing an ESOL department, running international foundation and teacher training programmes and recruiting international students. Replicating this role in Higher Education more recently has led to role focused on developing and maintaining TNE partnerships at scale and international student exchange opportunities for a University and supporting the development of complementary partnerships with Further Education colleges.

Read more
Rosemarie Davies

Rosemarie Davies

Chair of the Awarding Organisation Committee

Rosemarie started her career in sales and marketing, followed by three years as a social worker in residential care settings for young people in Greater Manchester, before moving into Further Education in 1986.

In 2006 Rosemarie moved to Manchester Enterprises (now Economic Solutions) where she was responsible for the delivery of university accredited Leadership and Management qualifications.  In 2007 she was appointed as Head of Higher Education Programmes for Economic Solutions’ training arm, Skills Solutions, since which time she has overseen the substantial development of Economic Solutions’ HE provision. Rosemarie is the Chair of the Awarding Organisation Committee.

Read more
Stephen Carlisle

Stephen Carlisle

Chair of the Board

Stephen has a professional background in Human Resources. He was a senior manager in Further Education for over 20 years. Until his retirement, he had been Principal at two Further Education Colleges for a total of 7 years. Stephen is Chair of the Ascentis Board and he also Chairs the Remuneration Committee.

Read more
Wendy Robinson

Wendy Robinson

Trustee

Commercial Team

Alex Houghton

Alex Houghton

National Account Manager

Alex joined Ascentis in March 2021, after spending the last 14 years working with education providers in the Disabled Students Allowance, colleges and universities in the UK, Europe and the USA, as well as businesses and local authorities, providing innovative technology solutions. 

Alex looks after our Ascentis centres throughout the UK and leads the Account Management and new business team.

Outside of Ascentis, Alex spends his summers playing cricket for his local team and enjoys walking throughout the lake district.

Read more
Amy Collins

Amy Collins

Regional Account Manager

Amy joined Ascentis in the summer of 2023 and has experience in customer services and account managing FE Colleges, Training Providers and Employers across various sectors.

Amy looks after Ascentis centres in the North East, North West and Yorkshire and Humber. Amy is happy and eager to meet new and existing centres throughout this academic year. If you’d like to arrange a visit, please get in touch on the email button above.

Outside of Ascentis, Amy enjoys spending time with her rescue Chihuahua (Tyson) and socialising with friends and family.

Read more
Clarissa Wheeler

Clarissa Wheeler

Strategic Partnership Manager

Clarissa joined Ascentis in October 2023. She comes from a background in education, working previously in Awarding for 9 years, and within Adult Education as a Curriculum Manager and Tutor for 5 years before that.

Clarissa manages relationships with our partners and key stakeholders such as networks, alliances and employers.

Outside of Ascentis, Clarissa likes to build Lego, work on creative projects and spend time with her two children (both girls).

Read more
Freya Cronin

Freya Cronin

National Account Executive

Freya joined Ascentis in January 2021 and has experienced different roles at Ascentis including Commercial Administrator for Marketing and Regional Sales Assistant. Before Ascentis, Freya worked for a recruitment agency for British citizens to move to New Zealand.

Promoted to account management, Freya now looks after around 70 centres across the North of England and Yorkshire. Freya also deals with new business enquiries and is always happy to meet with new or existing centres either in person or virtually on MS Teams

Outside of Ascentis, Freya enjoys spending time with her friends and family. 

Read more
Matthew Halliday

Matthew Halliday

Regional Account Manager

Matt joined Ascentis in September 2022 and has a background in account management & business development within the food wholesale industry.

Matt looks after our Ascentis centres in London, the South and the East Midlands of England. Matt is looking to meet new and existing centres throughout this academic year. If you’d like to arrange a visit please get in touch on the Email button above.

Outside of Ascentis Matt is a keen Cricketer.

Read more

People and Culture Team

Becky Sargent

Becky Sargent

People and Culture Coordinator

Becky Sargent has been a core part of the People and Culture team since July 2016, progressing to her current role as our People and Culture Coordinator. With Becky's creativity, passion for fun and positive vibes, she focuses on projects which enhance our people experience, employee engagement, reward and recognition. Becky also has the digital bug, which means she continuously helps to improve digital processes in the team, for example, the People Portal. The People Portal is a digital platform, which supports performance and development planning, holiday bookings, recording of personal details, and much more. 

Read more
Emma Knight

Emma Knight

Head of People and Culture

As our Head of People and Culture, Emma has proudly worked at Ascentis since March 2019 and is a fully qualified and experienced HR professional. Emma is truly passionate about continually developing the Ascentis group to be the best possible employer, for all of our wonderfully talented people. Emma develops our People and Culture strategy and drives this forward with the support of colleagues and the People and Culture team. The People and Culture strategy ensures that we create an environment and culture which fosters engagement, high performance, adaptability and effective team working. Emma takes pride in ensuring that our people are treated fairly, inclusively and supportively, through our range of forward-thinking policies and engagement strategies. 

Read more
Stacey Boardman

Stacey Boardman

People and Culture Manager

Stacey recently joined the team in September 2022 as a People and Culture Advisor and has a whopping 14 years of experience in both SMEs and larger organisations in the private, public and third sectors. As a true generalist, Stacey’s role includes supporting managers and employees throughout the employment cycle in areas such as recruitment, policies and learning and development.

Stacey loves communicating and driving awareness of all things wellbeing, in fact, this makes her day! Stacey is passionate about Ascentis being a great place to work and enjoys working with employees at all levels to foster an environment that is inclusive and collaborative.  Outside of work you will usually find Stacey reading, spending time with friends and family or ferrying her children to and from their many clubs.

Read more

Customer Service

Jayne Thompson

Jayne Thompson

Customer Support Administrator

Vee Barrie

Vee Barrie

Customer Support Administrator

Watch Our Client Videos

Ascentis helps change the lives of over 170,000 learners each year. Hear about why our staff love working for us, and why our customers love working with us.

See all

Leicester Adult Skills and Learning Service Speaking about Ascentis English & Maths Stepping Stones

Ascentis has a fantastic suite of English and Maths Stepping Stones qualifications which enable learners to focus on specific skills, build their confidence and progress onto further learning. This testimonial video features Leicester Adult Skills and Learning Service who outline the benefits to them and their learners of using these qualifications.

Watch Video

The City of Liverpool College Speaking about Ascentis Access to Higher Education

Access to HE with Ascentis - We Make a Difference. Watch our Testimonial and hear how it makes a difference to learners and the opportunities it brings.

Watch Video

Best Practice People Speaking about Ascentis Short Online Qualifications

The Ascentis Short Online Qualifications are delivered in many centres across the UK and help to support learners’ Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare. Listen to Ascentis Customer, Best Practice People talk about how effective the Ascentis Short Online Qualifications are and how they successfully aid their NEET learners, improving skills and confidence in turn helping them secure employment.

Watch Video

Join hundreds of happy centres nationwide

Arrange a meeting

What our happy customers say

“We are very pleased that we made the move to Ascentis for all our ESOL exams. The exams are appropriate for our learners, and lecturers find the marking manageable. As an organisation, Ascentis is a pleasure to work with. Our queries are always dealt with quickly and we are extremely well supported by our verifier.”

Waltham Forest

“We have thoroughly enjoyed our first year with Ascentis. There has been support of a high quality throughout the academic year. Support has been provided through a variety of roles including the quality managers, lead EQA’s and subject moderators.”

Bradford College

“We have been delighted with the impact Ascentis Extended Awards in Mathematical Skills (Stepping Stones) have had on our student’s progression towards their functional skills mathematics as well as preparing them for the completion of their GCSE. It has taught them the essential skills in mathematics which enabled them to deal with the practical problems and challenges of life – at home, in education and at work. These skills are valued by employers and further education, and are a platform on which to build other employability skills. We are also very impressed with the level of service and commitment shown by the staff of Ascentis, they are always available to help whenever help is needed.”

Brent Start

“The transparency and support of Ascentis has been refreshing. Our moderation process has been a pleasure and developmental feedback has always been welcomed.”

Kensington & Chelsea College
News

Parnassus Training

Parnassus training for Ascentis customers

Read more
News

National Conference 2023: Highlights and Speaker Presentations...

Read more
News

Parnassus is live!

We are delighted to announce the launch of our new customer portal, Parnassus.

Read more

28th Feb 2024

IQA/Assessor Events

  • AELP
  • CPD Certified
  • FAB
  • Cyber Essentials
  • Natecla
  • Access to Higher Education
  • The Parliamentary Review
  • West Yorkshire Learning Providers
Close
Ascentis customers please login to view full specifications, tracking sheets, sample papers, customer policies and key documents.

Qualifications

Specification Overviews

Key Documents