What’s it like to be an apprentice?

30th October 2019

Welcome to my first monthly blog! I’m Sophie Cooper, a new apprentice at InterLearn working in the marketing team, and I’ll be sharing my experiences with you as I progress through my course giving a realistic account of what it’s like to be an apprentice. So, if you’re interested in apprenticeships, hopefully you’ll enjoy this blog series and find it useful!

A bit about me

I’m 19 and currently studying towards a Level 4 Business Administration Apprenticeship. Having just started, I can safely say this was the best decision for me!

I achieved 9 GCSEs at A-C grades and joined Worcester Sixth Form College, where I studied English, Media and Sociology, as I was interested in literature in different mediums and understanding different viewpoints. Having prior experience in Journalism and Media, I decided to apply to study Media Studies at Uni and happily submitted my application through UCAS.

However, it was also at this time that I started looking into apprenticeships because a lot of the potential careers I looked into needed a minimum amount of experience to gain the position. I also wanted to enhance my practical skills, as I found I started losing my knowledge when it was purely applied in the theoretical sense. So, I started researching and applying for apprenticeships through job posting websites, which is when I was given an interview and eventually gained my place here at InterLearn!

Now I’ve started my apprenticeship

This couldn’t have worked better! It was refreshing to find a company that really values their learners and apprentices and the fresh insight they (including me!) bring to the workplace. Instead of seeing them as cheap labour, they see their apprentices as providing a valuable new perspective while enabling them to gain essential skills and knowledge in a real work setting. The team are so supportive, if I’m stuck on anything they won’t hesitate in helping me and the whole office is so vibrant, it’s like a little work family!

This month my tasks have involved creating, editing and proof-reading social media posts on the social platforms and Trello (a snazzy way to manage and create mock-up posts before scheduling). I especially love coming up with funny and creative social media posts! I mean I legitimately did a post for World Octopus Day… need I say more! The key thing I learned from this however, is how to use even the craziest concepts to explain or highlight what InterLearn does…. Clever eh?

Another task was taking minutes in meetings, which is basically writing down everything people say and putting it into a professional document to summarise points discussed and the agreed actions… something I’ve never done before. Call me Sophie the Steam Engine, because I was typing so fast trying to keep up and my hands were burning… Yes, I’m aware that nick-name is just cringe, moving on. I also created a master spreadsheet (just a fancy word for a big spreadsheet), with lots of business data in it, which quite frankly made my brain ache, I mean I’m in marketing, not Maths!

All in all, I’ve really loved my first month at InterLearn! I found that becoming an apprentice has been a stepping stone into an amazing and potentially long-term career in marketing, opening my eyes to the working world and how to succeed in it. I would definitely recommend pursuing an apprenticeship if you want to gain experience and #earnwhilstyoulearn because I’m growing into a more resilient and independent person always striving to succeed, every day. If you’re an employer, I’d also encourage you to take on an apprentice in your workplace. I’d like to think that if you were to ask my manager, she would tell you that it’s a great thing to do!

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