Apprenticeships explained

As National Apprentice-ship Week approaches, I would like to share why I chose an apprenticeship and my experience so far.

Thursday, 9th March 2017, 2:50 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:53 am
Hannah Ratcliffe

After education, the thought of what to do next was quite daunting.

Once I left Cardinal Newman College in Preston after attending Chorley St Michael’s CE High School, university didn’t appeal, so I began researching alternatives. I felt a job in marketing would fit my creative personality, plus I wanted to benefit from learning on the job. This influenced my choice to do an apprenticeship.

Last summer, I began a digital marketing apprenticeship with Preston College; I now work as an SEO outreach assistant at every1, a digital marketing agency in Preston. I support the outreach manager to gain online coverage for our clients and drive traffic to their websites. Currently, we are growing the digital marketing department at every1 to support big contracts. Since starting, I have worked with Rossall School, the Federation of Small Businesses, and an arm of the world’s largest private healthcare brand.

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Apprentices aren’t just there to make tea for the bosses. I feel extremely valued at every1 and I have challenging responsibilities. These include sending product samples to online influencers, arranging blogger events, building our social media followers, and working with media outlets to negotiate budgets and content for our clients. I also work on client strategies, track results and help with reporting. A highlight was when a campaign I worked on was nominated by the Chartered Institute of Marketing for the ‘Best use of Digital Marketing’ award.

Jumping into a full time job straight after school or college is a big change, but I feel I have grown, with support from every1 and Preston College. Not only have I gained confidence and independence but work in a professional environment and have learned many marketing skills – all without a student loan.

My manager said I have been “a fantastic addition to the growing team.” She’s also been impressed with my hard work and how quickly I’ve adapted to the fast-moving nature of digital marketing. This shows how far I have come already and, after choosing this path, can’t recommend apprenticeships enough.