Former apprentice, Jake Rafferty-Ford, 23, shares his experiences and talks about how he has progressed to a role and gone full circle where he now supports young people into apprenticeships.
What did you do when you left school?
I never really knew what I wanted to do when I left school. It's a really hard decision to make at a young age. I ended up leaving school with good GCSE grades and starting out doing AS Levels at a local college. Wow, that was a shock. Nothing prepares you for the workload that comes your way, it's a lot after being so used to school and it's a lot harder.
For me, I don't think the structure was there for me at college. You are pretty much left to your own devices and I needed an environment which was much more structured and less of a 'sit-in-classroom' environment.
How did you start an apprenticeship?
I left college and applied for an apprenticeship vacancy with Aspire Housing in a role within their Employment and Skills team. I joined PM Training and was delighted to get the position as I was now earning a wage but knew I'd be learning loads and meeting new people. My apprenticeship allowed me to focus heavily on completing my Level 2 Business Administration qualification.
"I really enjoy my job, and I'm really glad an apprenticeship has
helped me get to where I am today."
How has your career progressed?
After 12 months in my role with Aspire Housing, I applied for a full time role as an Employment & Skills Coordinator. During this time I worked towards and achieved my Level 3 Business Administration qualification as well as my Level 3 Education & Training qualification.
In my role I spent time with other members of the PM Training team and got to know the business in depth. I learn't lots of new skills and applied for a new position as a Learner Services Coordinator where I now support learners, attend recruitment events, visit local schools and carry out interviews and inductions with new learners wanting to become apprentices. I really like how I can share my experience knowing I was once in the same position.
What advice would you give to other young people thinking about starting an apprenticeship?
My advice to young people would be to never give up, keep your attendance up and keep your options open! You may try something and realise you don't like it. From being an apprentice to now working at PM Training, I can see both sides, and that's the beauty of PM Training, you get to try a variety of different roles on the study programme.
Keep your eyes out for Jake at local school events or in our training centre. For more information about PM Training and how you can develop your career check out our benefits to being an apprentice, attend our next open day or apply for one of our apprenticeship vacancies.
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