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By Amy Ball on 12 February 2018

The tagline often thrown around when talking about Apprenticeships is ‘earn while you learn’. Before I started my apprenticeship, I didn’t trust it one bit. I believed an Apprenticeship was hard work for low pay, popping into college every now and again to go to classes and doing tedious assignments.

But as I start my second week in my Business Administration and Marketing Apprenticeship, I am pleased to report that I have never been happier to be wrong.

When my manager sat down with me to discuss my modules, I was shocked to find that I would be earning credits for tasks that are required in my job role anyway. For example, as an Apprentice, I had assumed that I would be doing things like taking minutes for meetings and writing emails. What I didn’t know was that I would be gaining three credits at a time for doing them! It is honestly the most rewarding feeling – not only am I learning new skills that will help to set me apart from other applicants in future job opportunities, I’ll have practical experience and examples to show prospective employers too, all whilst working towards a Level 3 Diploma.

Also this week, I met with one of the college functional skills trainers to officially start my enrolment. Alongside this, I also had to complete placement assessments in English and Maths. I won’t lie, it was pretty nerve-wracking to begin with, as I had not done much maths since I achieved my GCSE three years ago! Luckily, it all worked out, and I officially passed to get onto my course. I know now that the placement assessments are nothing to be scared of either. It allows the College to see the areas you are weaker in and give you the right help to make sure you have your functional skills, which in turn makes you a lot more employable. Towards the end of our meeting, my trainer gave me a SWOT analysis to work on before I meet my assessor. This gives me the chance to reflect on my time on the job so far, noting down my strengths, weaknesses, opportunities to improve and threats to my improvement. My assessor will then talk this through with me and help my progression.

Looking back on my first week on the job, I can’t believe how quickly I’m settling in. I already have lots of projects and responsibilities and I’m excited to grow in the department and in the sector. Considering how hesitant I’ve been in the past to pursue a career in marketing, it’s amazing how just one week on the job has made my mind up so quickly. I genuinely can’t imagine doing anything else.

In the coming weeks, I have a lot to look forward to. I’m officially meeting my assessor, who will be visiting me at work once a month to review my progress. I can also begin to submit work through the online portfolio system for grading, and get fully started with my qualification. I have a feeling it won’t be easy, but I know it’ll be worth it.

Something’s telling me these 18 months are going to fly by!