Apprenticeships: Case studies

The Trust has over 140 apprentices working in many areas both clinical and non-clinical.

Below are just three positive stories, please have a read.

Carla Yarra

Carla, 26, is an assistant audiologist.

She sees outpatients in daily clinics, working to provide care to patients with hearing problems.

Carla is working towards an apprenticeship with the Trust, learning on the job and completing educational sessions and essay writing.

"When I left school, I went into IT but soon realised that this wasn't for me. After looking at the NHS Jobs website, I saw the apprentice position at the audiology department and was thrilled to be offered the position following an interview.

"I love my job, and it wasn't long before my mentors did not need to watch over me anymore and felt confident that I could see patients alone. I felt comfortable with this too, and the months of shadowing and on-the-job training had prepared me.

"If I ever do need any help, my mentors are always on hand to support wherever they can. I am so grateful to have such a great team, who all look out for me and are so supportive of my development in the role. I also have dedicated time to work on academic work, and can always go to my mentors and seniors for educational guidance if I am unsure about a question.

"I am so glad that I took the apprenticeship route and it was good to know that I did not require any previous experience in this field in order to start in the position. This took a lot of pressure of the interview process and I did not panic about starting a complete career change to my previous studies.

"I am really enjoying the course and love that I will be qualified at the end of it. For anybody who is unsure about applying for an apprenticeship, go for it!"

Justine Faulkes

Justine, 46, was in the Army for many years before making the jump in a big career change. From working in weapons, Justine took a different path in life and applied for an HCA role in ED through an apprenticeship.

Justine treats patients in ED with dressings, plastering and glueing, as well as caring for patients by serving dinners and just keeping them company.

"I really enjoy my role as an HCA and I love the thrill of ED. I get to see something new every day and am always meeting new people. It is an exciting environment to work in and is definitely where my heart lies.

"I am coming to the end of my Level 2 qualification and then will move onto Level 3 before completing my nurse training to become a fully qualified ED nurse.

"I was very nervous about making the choice for such a big career change, and the upheaval that comes with it, but it was so worth it.

"I would encourage any older people who are unsure about doing an apprenticeship to take the leap like I did, always go for it.

"I wanted to know that the NHS was right for me, so this was the perfect option to dip my feet in first. It didn't take long for me to know though- the NHS is definitely right for me!" 

Owain Davies

Owain, 21, was unsure about what he wanted to do after school and felt that university might not be right for him.

He joined an apprenticeship in Health and Safety and is now working towards a level 3 qualification.

"When I was at school, I didn't really know what I wanted to do as a career. I considered a few options and then found out about the apprenticeship schemes offered at the Great Western Hospital.

"I had already completed work experience here whilst at college, so knew that the NHS was a great organisation to work for and this encouraged me to apply for the apprenticeship scheme.

"Now, I am over two years into my apprenticeship and am loving it.

"I don't feel like a student, but am instead treated exactly the same as every other member of the team. Every day, I don't feel like I am going to learn or further my education, but instead that I am going to work which is great!

"My role includes investigating all IR1's that come in, as well as spending time across the hospital ensuring there are no risks to the health and safety of all staff, patients and visitors.

"It is a real hands on job and will stand me in great stead for my career development. I would like to stay in the NHS, but I also know that the skills I have learnt are transferable to so many other jobs.

"Doing an apprenticeship is such a good route for anybody straight from school who is unsure about what they want to do but they are also great for those who know exactly what they want to do."

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