Shannon case study

ShannonRead more about why Shannon chose an apprenticeship

How did you hear about your apprenticeship?

I wanted to leave college so spoke to a careers adviser and friends who recommended I apply for apprenticeships via the apprenticeship website.

When did you realise that an apprenticeship is what you wanted to do?

After spending a year at college and taking my AS exams.

Why not college?

College wasn’t as much of a ‘hands on’ experience as I’d expected and was very academically based.

Was it easy to get on your apprenticeship and what qualifications did you need?

It was easy for me to get my apprenticeship, although it wasn’t based on GCSEs, it was based on my experience working in a retail environment as a volunteer on a weekend at a charity shop for two years that actually secured me the job.

What is it like working for your company?

Working for Joker 666 Tattoo and Piercing Studio is brilliant because you get to meet lots of new people who all want different things, and my employers are very supportive and make allowances for my other commitments eg ambassador training.

Did they give you training and if yes, what did the training involve? Did they give you enough support?

I didn’t really have any training as I started off doing a level two customer service qualification so learnt a lot of the skills on the job. I am training with The Source Skills Academy and they come to visit me whilst I’m at work once a month.  I’ve been able to progress all the way from level two and I’m currently working towards my level three and then will be moving on to level four, which is management - I will be a fully trained supervisor and will be learning management skills.. I did have some issues with the tutors at the beginning of the course with them not turning up but these issues have since been resolved and the assessor, which I have for my level three qualification is great. The hardest balance sometimes is finding time to do all of my coursework outside of work, especially if I’ve been working a lot but my assessor is very considerate of this fact and will give me as much work as I can manage.

What would you say are the perks of the job, the fun parts?

The half price on treatments, as well as being in an environment that is open and where everyone gets along.

Everyone where I work has a great sense of humour and we always have banter, which is great because it helps to pass the time if there isn’t a lot of customers.

How did doing an apprenticeship affect your social life?

It is hard sometimes when all of my friends' lives revolve around term-time holidays at college or university and I have to book time off of work in advance but it is better as well because you have a lot more freedom for example, proper days off where you don’t have to go into work at all rather than just late starts or early finishes at college.

Did it help you to save money?

At first I spent all of my wages as soon as I got them because this was the first paid job I’d ever had but then I learnt to start putting money aside and it’s helped me save up for things which I can’t pay for all at once like driving lessons. It’s really great getting paid because I’m now able to pay for things myself for example, gym membership, magazine subscriptions, holidays.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I hope to either be managing all of the businesses that my boss owns, or to possibly even have my own business and have a proper degree in business administration.

Page updated September 2016

Luke case study

Read more about why Luke chose an apprenticeship

How did you hear about your apprenticeship?

I had work experience and heard about the opening then.

When did you realise that an apprenticeship is what you wanted to do?

During my AS level year, I found that I didn’t like the teaching and learning style, I wanted to try something else, this was it.

Why not college?

I didn’t like the teaching style. I much prefer working to college, college was not good at all.

Was it easy to get on your apprenticeship and what qualifications did you need?

Sort of, I found it by doing work experience, without that experience I don’t think I would have got it.

What is it like working for your company?

They're pretty good to work with, there’s a good amount of banter, which helps keeps things light.

Did they give you training and if yes, what did the training involve? Did they give you enough support?

I am currently training with QA Apprenticeships doing IT systems and networking, I attend training for a week or two every few weeks. My tutors for my training where AWESOME! Richard is really cool, which makes it all a lot better.

What would you say are the perks of the job, the fun parts?

Playing with computer is always been something I enjoy, now I do it for a living, it’s not bad.

Did it help you to save money?

Not really, for instance travel, is so much more expensive, ie a week is £20 rather than £7, things just cost more. Having money is awesome. I've now brought a £2,000 computer, which is evidently extremely powerful, and makes my mates jealous.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I still don’t know what I want to do with my life; I’ll see where this takes us.

Page updated September 2016

Darren case study

Read more about why Darren chose an apprenticeship

DarrenHow did you hear about your apprenticeship?

The opportunity came to me from working with C&K Careers, they helped with searching for apprenticeships that suited me, my learning styles and the roles that I wanted. I heard about it via email but there was also a website and the centres that I visited, which provided me with other apprenticeship roles I could have applied for.

When did you realise that an apprenticeship is what you wanted to do?

My preferred learning style is hands on (kinaesthetic) rather than sat in a class room or reading through a text book. My apprenticeship gives me that more hands on and work-related learning aspect, as well as giving me a taste at the working life whilst still progressing with my education.

Was it easy to get on your apprenticeship and what qualifications did you need?

My apprenticeship is working at C&K Careers in an administrative role dealing with both internal and external clients. The apprenticeship was as hard as I expected it to be. My apprenticeship required me to have 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) including English and maths, which I had achieved. I applied online via email and had to produce a copy of my CV and opening letter. I then heard back via email and an interview was arranged the following week. During that interview a selection of questions were asked based on my personality and background then more work and scenario-related questions to find out more about what I would do in certain situations.

Did they give you training and if yes, what did the training involve? Did they give you enough support?

Yes, my training consists of fully in-house training given to me by my assessor on a monthly basis, this includes professional conversations about the work I’m doing, proof of work, worksheets and my assessor shadowing me during my day-to-day business.

Did you like your course? How helpful were your tutors?

The studying is done throughout my working day and my assessor and management is helping me study and providing me the right time to study, which is at my own pace, this works well as I don’t feel under pressure by my workload and I can continue to develop the work side of my apprenticeship just as much as my studying.

How did doing an apprenticeship affect your life?

My apprenticeship changed me in lots of different ways from my punctuality to my attitude both in and out of work. I’ve developed a lot of different skills since I started my apprenticeship and cannot wait to carry on progressing.

What advice would you give to other young people thinking about doing an apprenticeship?

I would definitely say go for it if it’s something you want to do and think you’d be interested in. You can gain a lot from an apprenticeship from general knowledge of things and the way the world works to developing yourself and your personality as a person.

What are your plans for the future?

Short term my careers plan is to stick at the current course and possibly advance up to level 3 and from there I don’t have a set out plan, just see where life takes itself.

Where do you see yourself in at the end of your apprenticeship?

I will most likely look to do my NVQ Level 3 as currently I am doing Level 2 to further develop my education and knowledge for the future.

Page updated March 2017

Olivia case study

Read more about why Olivia chose an apprenticeship

How did you hear about your apprenticeship?

Through my boss.

When did you realise that an apprenticeship is what you wanted to do?

After I left college, I applied for a job with apprenticeship training and realised it was a good opportunity, so I continued to look for more accounting apprenticeships.

Why not college?

I did go to college and got three A levels but after college I decided that I wasn't ready for uni and I didn't know what to study.

Was it easy to get on your apprenticeship and what qualifications did you need?

As I was looking for an apprenticeship in accounting a lot of roles were looking for at least a C in maths at GCSE level (which I had). I also started the AAT qualification, which is the qualification offered through accounting apprenticeships, independently, which may have been more appealing to prospective employers.

What is it like working for your company?

Very enjoyable. It's only a small practice, so its important everyone gets on, which makes it more enjoyable to come to work. Unlike some other workplaces we also get to learn all aspects of working in practice and not just stuck in one area.

Did they give you training and if yes, what did the training involve? Did they give you enough support?

I get day release to go to college to gain my AAT qualification and if I need additional support with my exams my colleague and boss help if possible and also allow me additional days at college if needed. I attend college one day a week, currently a Friday to gain an AAT level 4 diploma in Accounting. I enjoy my course and my tutors are always available if I need extra help with exams. 

What would you say are the perks of the job, the fun parts?

We all really get along and have a laugh.

How did doing an apprenticeship affect your social life?

Working full time whist my friends were at uni meant that I was more restricted as to when I had free time to see them. If they had days off or was on holiday I would usually be working, which could sometimes get annoying.

Did it help you to save money?

Not really. The apprenticeship wage is not a lot ,so at first I didn't have enough money to save as well. I'm also a shopaholic, so I definitely couldn't do both, in hindsight I maybe should have.  I was earning money, which often meant I had more money for activities than mo[st] friends. I was able to spend money on increasing my shoe collection and also holidays with friends.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

To continue to learn my job role and become better. When I finish my apprenticeship I will have an AAT level 4 diploma and also three years experience in practice, I can then progress at my current employer, continue studying to become a chartered accountant or apply for a higher position.

 

Page updated September 2016

Imogen case study

ImogenRead more about why Imogen chose an apprenticeship

How did you hear about your apprenticeship?

Alongside my A level studies I completed a work experience placement at a local accountancy firm. I approached the manager towards the end of year 13 and enquired whether they could support me through my apprenticeship training. At first they said no as there was not a position available, however, they contacted me a couple of months later to say a vacancy had come available and they would like to offer me a position.

When did you realise that an apprenticeship is what you wanted to do?

When I was in the sixth form. I chose an apprenticeship rather than going to university because I felt it’d be more beneficial to me for a career in accountancy.

Was it easy to get on your apprenticeship and what qualifications did you need?

To get on my apprenticeship course I needed at least a C pass in English and maths, and A levels.

What is it like working for your company?

My apprenticeship is going very well and my work have been very supportive.

How often did you attend college and what is your course?

I’m currently at college one day a week studying AAT, I have passed my first year and currently doing my second year.

How did doing an apprenticeship affect your social life?

It is hard work trying to juggle your work and social life along with studying but if you’re determined to succeed, you will put in the amount of effort required.

Did it help you to save money?

Getting paid to succeed is like a bonus plus you basically get paid to go to college and study if you’re on day release. The thing that put me off going to university the most is how much everything costs and knowing you’re going to be in a lot of debt and potentially jobless at the end of it.

How did your apprenticeship help you personally?

I feel like I’ve gained a lot more experience working whilst studying as I’m able to use what I’ve learnt in real life situations and everyday at work.

What are the benefits of an apprenticeship?

It would take me the same amount of time to become qualified through my apprenticeship than it would if I went to university. When you finish university, you’re effectively going to be starting at the bottom again trying to find the best job, where as with an apprenticeship you’re already starting at the bottom and by the time everyone else has finished university, you will be already qualified and have much more experience and hopefully would be guaranteed a permanent job where you already work.

What are your plans for the future?

My aim for the future is to become a certified or chartered accountant. My advice would be to think about what career you want to pursue and if there is a possibility to do an apprenticeship instead of university, I would go for it!

 

Page updated November 2016

Our careers advisers are based at:

Head Office
C & K Careers Ltd
78 John William Street
Huddersfield
HD1 1EH

T: 01484 225500
F: 08724 464511
Text: Info, followed by your message to 07786 202804