Apprenticeships are fast becoming a popular alternative to university life as well as a less daunting introduction into the working world. Admittedly an apprenticeship was never my original intention but having joined the team at CIB – I feel like I’ve found the right path for me.
All this changed when I attended a careers fair in the first year of sixth form and learned of the numerous opportunities that would become available as a result of following an apprenticeship route.
The whole idea around going to university was drilled into us from as early as year 10 all the way up to and during sixth form. All this is very beneficial if you have a fixed mind-set regarding what degree you want to study and what your future goals are.
After finishing sixth form, at the age of 18, I applied for and maintained a second part time job with a view that I would continue to gain experience and save money for the subsequent year. Looking back on it now it was undoubtedly the best decision that I could have made, even if I did feel a bit lost and anxious at the time, because I gained real life experience within two diverse work environments as well as valuable time to consider my future.
With the start of the 2015/2016-apprenticeship year approaching, I decided to bite the bullet and create an account on the official gov.uk website. I began by searching based on my interests – ‘Arts, media and publishing’ – and found a range of job vacancies. In particular the placement with CIB stood out for me, not only because I enjoyed and felt well-versed within social media channels, but also as this role required communication skills and a general creative mind-set which I felt were characteristics I had.
I am now nearing the end of my first week as a ‘Digital Analytics Executive’ at CIB Communications and, whilst I know that I have a full year ahead of me, I feel confident that I have made the right decision in terms of learning whilst working and obtaining a respective qualification as a result.