Tell us a little bit about your background.
I come from a working class, single-parent background after my mother passed away when I was young. I had a good childhood but we never had a lot of money growing up.
A couple of years ago we moved up north which meant I had to wake up at 5.30am every day in order to drive an hour and a half to school. I’m really pleased that despite these challenging circumstances I managed to get A* A, A, B at A Level. It hasn’t been easy but I feel that my background has shaped me into the person I am today.
What was your experience like on the Apprenticeship Summer School?
The summer school itself was fantastic. The people were friendly and kind, and they always engaged with us. It helped being able to hear from other apprentices and hear from the companies too. All three companies I ended up applying to were at the Summer School which provided me with lots of information.
What lead you to apply for an apprenticeship and how did you find the application process?
I was concerned about getting into debt from student loans, given my background I wasn’t sure if I could afford it, so I liked the idea of doing an apprenticeship. I applied for three: an Audit position at Grant Thorntons, a degree apprenticeship at EY and tax at PwC. The process for the audit position was fairly easy and super laid back. I had a 5 hour examination day with PwC including the 2 hour interviews I had. It felt a little daunting because I’d never done anything like that before, but I prepared by researching a lot into the company and it was fine.
What did you enjoy about your apprenticeship?
I’ enjoyed all the opportunities they gave me. PwC is fantastic and were super supportive of me and helped any way they could. I can’t pick a fault, everyone was welcoming and helpful: I’d already participated in client work when I’d only been there just over a month. It’s a great environment!
What are your ambitions for the future?
My main ambition for the future is to become a director, but that’ll be quite far off! At the moment I’m working towards getting my ACA qualification.
What would you tell someone who was unsure about applying for an apprenticeship?
I’d say you should just try it and see how it goes. After all, if you get an offer you don’t have to take it, so you may as well give yourself options. It’s a big change from school but it’s actually not scary., You get paid, you earn a qualification and get to meet good colleagues along the way.
What advice would you give to a future Sutton Trust Apprenticeship Summer School student?
I’d say be punctual and take all the opportunities that they give you. It’s a wonderful community and wonderful staff and they’re there to help you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions either.