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Ikra Ahmed

Why did you choose to do an Apprenticeship?

The only thing that made me consider university was that everyone else in my school was choosing this option, so I did end up following the majority and I applied for university. However, once I received my offer, I deferred my application as I knew I wasn’t fully committed to the idea of studying for 3 years at university. I have always valued the idea of being able to gain work experience and a qualification at the same time and this is what really pushed me to go for an Apprenticeship instead of following the traditional route and go to university.

How did you find out about your Apprenticeship?

I used to speak to my careers advisor at Cheney School and that’s when I was introduced to options other than Uni.  Gov.uk is a good site to browse on for Apprenticeships because it was updated regularly with different roles.

What have you gained from your Apprenticeship?

I am really enjoying my role so far. I have learnt all the systems, allowing me to carry out project tasks independently. When I started, I realised I had lots of responsibilities and I absolutely love being independent, showing I can prioritise my workload in order to deliver tasks on time. I love holding a great relationship with my customers. I’ve gained a lot of confidence in my communication too; my role allows me to speak to many different teams and customers which allows me to keep developing. 

What do you plan to do next?

I plan to complete my Level 3 Business Administration and progress onto the next Level after this. Ideally I would like to stay in the Apprenticeship scheme to see how far I can progress. I’m open to trying different roles, and the main thing I like about an apprenticeship is that you can tailor it to suite what you want to specialise in.

How will your Apprenticeship help you achieve this?

The Apprenticeship I am doing is giving me a solid platform to work from. Business Administration will give me a highly transferable set of knowledge, skills and behaviours that can be applied in all sectors. I know this will open doors for me to progress to the next stage.  

What advice would you give a young person who might be thinking about an Apprenticeship?

I would say that if you are an individual that is keen to kick start a career, an Apprenticeship is definitely a good way to go. Having working experience is so valuable and you will also be able to gain a qualification alongside this. One thing I have realised is that I have learnt a lot more on the job than I ever did in a classroom! University isn’t the only route to success.

What’s your top tip?

Never say no to an opportunity. Every experience will benefit you in one way or another!

How do you feel about becoming an Apprenticeship Ambassador?

I am excited to see what the role entails. I know how much an Apprentice figure helped me when making my decision so I’m ready to share my thoughts and experiences to help others.