Jamie goes online for career start

Jamie BrobenCareers Wales is leading the way in matching businesses and individuals who are eager to pursue the career of their dreams. While apprenticeships, in one form or another, have been around since the Middle Ages with the first regulation of terms taking effect in 1563, life as an apprentice today, could not be further from old perceptions, as more and more school leavers in Wales are attracted to the diversity of jobs and career paths now available to them.

One person who is already benefiting from his decision to become an apprentice is 17-year-old Jamie Broben from Port Talbot. Jamie was successful in securing an apprenticeship with WBTA (Work Based Training Agency) as an Apprentice Administrative Assistant and is now 9 months into his apprenticeship.

Speaking about his decision to pursue an apprenticeship, Jamie said: “After completing my GCSEs at Cymer Afan Comprehensive in Port Talbot, I enrolled at Neath Port Talbot College to study a BTEC in ICT, but I really didn’t feel that further education was for me and I was very keen to get into the world of work. I hadn’t really thought much about starting out as an apprentice but I met with my local Careers Wales team and I came to the conclusion that this was the best way for me to start working while picking up the skills that I needed.

“The Careers Wales team signed me up to the Apprenticeship Matching Service on and showed me how to create a unique profile, search and apply for vacancies. The staff were very helpful and informed me when suitable vacancies became available. I was also given help with preparing a CV so that I could approach employers directly.”

“I was told about the benefits of doing some work experience and how this would help boost my CV. Apart from undertaking the school work experience programme, my work history was limited and I felt that gaining some skills would help when applying for apprenticeships. I sent my CV to WBTA and undertook a 3 week work placement at their office in Port Talbot. I was delighted to be offered a permanent position with them following completion of the work experience placement.”

“I really enjoy working as part of the team and my role means that I communicate and work closely with all levels of management on a daily basis. Every day I’m doing something different and I particularly enjoy lending my hand to different aspects of the daily running which could include anything from taking phone calls and messages, bookings for various courses, general administrate duties and regularly act as a casualty for the MIRA (Medicine in Remote Areas) courses. No two days are the same.”

“I’m very glad that I looked into the options available to me and completed work experience which opened up the apprenticeship opportunity. It has given me valuable skills, a wage and I’m learning every day.”

Speaking about the value that the organisation placed on employing young people, Maria Hibbard, Programmes Manager from WBTA said, “Jamie left a lasting impression on me during his work experience placement and his name immediately came to mind when some apprentice vacancies became available. I already had experience of Jamie’s attitude to work and was sure he could fill the position. Jamie had also made himself indispensable. I asked Jamie how he felt after his first days with us and his answer was “elated”. I think that says it all!”

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