As it’s National Apprenticeship Week we decided to speak to our resident Business & Administration apprentice Laura Bentley to find out how working while studying can be a winning combination.

How did you decide an apprenticeship was something you wanted to do?

I wanted to gain work experience as well as increase my qualification portfolio. I believe that nothing can replace hands on involvement in a company environment. I was keen to enter a working environment rather than just enrol onto an education-based course.

How long have you been an apprentice?

I have been an apprentice for four years now.

What are you studying towards?

For the first two years of my apprenticeship, I gained my level 2 and level 3 NVQ in Business & Administration. I am now studying for my Level 4 HNC in Business & Administration, which should be finished by the summer. I am keen to complete this as soon as possible & then I can make my future decisions regarding further education & employment opportunities.

How does your work week balance with your studies?

It balances well as I take every Friday as a study day. This enables me to attend college or use the library, have lessons and write up my assignments.

What work events have you enjoyed participating during 2019?

I have really enjoyed our work events in 2019, especially our trip to Wales where we all walked up Snowdon. I also enjoyed the Christmas get-togethers, as it gives the team time to bond in a more relaxed setting. These were both great team-building events.

What is your aim for when your apprenticeship is completed?

As mentioned above I am keen to complete the current level of qualification. I am still undecided whether I would like to carry on with education or not, but the option is there if I wish to. I feel I have expanded my skills for my job role & gained the necessary experience & qualifications to further myself in the Business Administration environment.

What would you say to someone who is unsure about beginning an apprenticeship?

Moving straight into the working sector as an apprentice has been the best decision I made. It has enabled me to grow in confidence, gain various skills and expand my education alongside building up valuable work experience. When I compare today to 4 years ago, I have developed much more so than if I had just gone down the education route.

national apprenticeship week