Argyll and Bute Council is proud to support this year’s Scottish Apprenticeship Week.
The national campaign by Skills Development Scotland runs from today (Monday) until 9 March and is aimed at encouraging more employers to take on apprentices, and recognising the achievements of apprentices across Scotland.
The council’s apprenticeship scheme has been a great success. To date 23 apprentices have completed the programme and of those, 91% have gone onto a positive destination, with 70% gaining further council employment.
The council’s Policy Lead for Corporate Services, Councillor Rory Colville said: “We are delighted to offer apprenticeships across Argyll and Bute as part of the Growing Our Own initiative. Council apprenticeships are a great way of attracting new employees into the organisation and providing young people in the area a chance to live, learn and work in Argyll and Bute.
“Apprenticeships can bring a host of benefits to a young person. They can gain an industry recognised qualification whilst getting paid, and are also getting a head start, by gaining work experience. An apprenticeship can be the ideal opportunity to help pupils move into the world of work and develop their skills as they do so.
“We are continuing to offer a wide range of apprenticeships to provide as many opportunities as possible for young people in Argyll and Bute.”
Throughout this week, the council is supporting a number of events. Keep an eye on our social media pages too where our apprentices, and those of our partners, will be telling their stories. We are aiming to try and encourage other employers to take on apprentices, to recognise the success of council apprenticeships and to highlight the benefits that they can bring to young people and to employers.
To find out more about Argyll and Bute Council’s Modern Apprenticeship scheme, please visit www.growingourown.scot , or contact firstname.lastname@example.org . To find out more information about Scottish Apprenticeship Week at www.apprenticeships.scot
Celebrating success of two Modern Apprentices
Two of Argyll and Bute Council’s Modern Apprenticeships have recently completed their apprenticeship qualification and are already seeing the benefits.
Based in our social work team in Campbeltown, Nicole Allan was just 17 when she started her business and administration apprenticeship last year.
Now having completed her qualification, she has been provided with an opportunity to undertake a temporary admin support worker role which has allowed her to develop her skills further and put everything she has learned throughout her apprenticeship into practice straight away.
Nicole said: “I have always wanted to have a career in admin and when I saw the Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship with Argyll and Bute Council I thought it would be the perfect opportunity for me. I knew that the apprenticeship was going to give me a qualification whilst gaining experience of working in an office environment.”
Nicole was able to achieve her SVQ 3 Business and Administration without the need to leave Campbeltown, with her assessor making regular visits to her work and the support of her line manager.
Nicole continued: “My self-confidence has grown massively during my time within the social work department and I have the team to thank for that. I have learned more than I could have ever imagined that I would here, which will enable me to go further in my career.
“I think my qualification will benefit me in the future because not only have I got the qualification, I also have the experience to go with it. Whilst completing the qualification I gained a lot of experience and skills such as working as part of a team, communicating appropriately with people both within and out with the organisation, and general office administration.
“I hope to find a permanent job with the council in the future, I would especially like to stay within the social work department as I have thoroughly enjoyed the work that I have been doing for the past year, so to get a permanent job would be great.”
Choosing the apprenticeship pathway is a choice Nicole is glad she has made and would certainly recommend it to others.
She said: “My Modern Apprenticeship has been the most rewarding experience of my life, I was really made to feel as if I made a difference in the team and I think that’s got to be the highlight of my time here. I feel like a valued member of the team and have made so many memories that I will never forget. My time with Argyll and Bute Council has been the most amazing experience.
“There isn’t a thing that I would want to change about it. To be given the opportunity to complete a qualification, while gaining experience in the work place as well as earning money was great. I have enjoyed every minute that I have spent here. I wouldn’t have been able to gain so much knowledge and experience if it wasn’t for the Council and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity”
Based within the Improvement and HR service in Kilmory, Chloe Brown, aged 18, has also recently completed her apprenticeship - gaining a year of valuable work experience and an industry-recognised qualification which has helped her to secure a temporary post within the council.
Chloe applied for the apprenticeship opportunity as she felt she did not have enough experience to join the council straight from school.
“I knew I wouldn’t be able to get a full time job within the council with no work experience, so I decided that an apprenticeship would be a better option as I would be able to get more experience and that way I could build up to getting a full time job,” she said.
As part of her apprenticeship, Chloe had placements within different teams. Despite being nervous about the prospect of working in a large building, and whether she would be able to undertake the role, Chloe has surprised herself over the past year and has been surprised by her own ability.
She said: “Looking back on the last year I can honestly say I have gained so much experience and learned so much by being here. It has been an amazing opportunity to work for the council with such amazing people and seeing how everyone comes together to help each other in difficult times. I’m grateful that I took the chance and done my year as a modern apprentice. It has helped me to go on to bigger things.”
Having enjoyed her year as an apprentice and her current role within HR and OD, Chloe is hopeful that she can continue to work for the council. She said: “Argyll and Bute Council is a great place to learn and gain experience. It has been a great adventure and would like to continue to be here for as long as possible and to build upon my success.”