BLAZING A TRAIL FOR APPRENTICES

A former Stratford-upon-Avon College apprentice perfectly epitomises the focus of this year’s National Apprenticeship Week which takes place 4th – 8th March.

The theme for this year is “Blazing a Trail” – and that is exactly what Lauren Stanley, from Bidford-on-Avon, has done. Having completed a Level 2 Business apprenticeship at Venture House Business Centre in Stratford-upon-Avon, Lauren was then headhunted by Alcester-based Wharton Natural Infrastructure Consultants, where she completed a Level 3 Business apprenticeship and for whom she now works full-time as an Administrative Assistant.

Both apprenticeships were delivered by Stratford-upon-Avon College and Lauren, who last month gave a presentation on the value of apprenticeships at the Stratford Business Show, is grateful to the College for facilitating her transfer between employers and for their invaluable support throughout: “My assessor was always on hand to answer any questions I had about my work. The College still helps me, and they continue to send me information about training opportunities so I can continue developing.”

Lauren Stanley, Administrative Assistant at Wharton Natural Infrastructure Consultants and graduate of Stratford-upon-Avon College’s apprenticeship programme, with Peter Wharton, Director of Wharton Natural Infrastructure Consultants.

For Peter Wharton, Director of Wharton Natural Infrastructure Consultants, the experience of taking on an apprentice has been a very positive one, with the College ensuring that the recruitment process was speedy and straightforward and Lauren proving to be a tremendous asset to the company.

Lauren’s transition from business centre to a consultancy put her professionalism to the test, but Peter has nothing but praise for her: “There were a lot of different things for Lauren to learn in terms of client communication, liaising with the team in the office, and she also had to learn new skills, particularly in finance. She’s come a long way in terms of confidence.”

Lauren herself, who now deals with business administration and sets up projects for the company consultants, enjoys the variety offered by her current position and thrives under the pressure of meeting client deadlines. She is in no doubt that she made the right decision in taking on an apprenticeship:

“It’s been a life-changer for me. I love going to work in the morning. Everyone at Wharton is so lovely and there’s such a nice atmosphere here.

“An apprenticeship taught me transferable skills that have made me much more employable. If I hadn’t taken an apprenticeship, I wouldn’t be able to live the lifestyle I’m living.”