My name is Emilia Hoyle, I am 23 and from Chester. I started at Heat Trace Ltd in September 2014 on a level 4 business and administration apprenticeship. On completion, I started a chartered management degree apprenticeship at Chester University, which I am due to complete in early summer of this year.
I first found out about an apprenticeship at school through a relationship between my school and Heat Trace, which led to me being nominated for a work placement opportunity. Following a meeting at Heat Trace, an apprenticeship was offered to me. Before starting, I completed weekly voluntary work experience while completing my A levels.
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Apprenticeship 'exceeded expectations'
My careers adviser explored many options with me, although university was encouraged more generally in the school, with an emphasis on everyone completing a Ucas statement.
I didn’t know exactly what to expect from my apprenticeship. I expected to learn new skills and meet new people. Working is different to school, I wanted to apply my new learned skills to real-life scenarios rather than just theory at university.
My apprenticeship has exceeded my expectations; I have been given so many amazing opportunities – such as overseas travel, managing projects and the opportunity to enter into awards. I have worked at Heat Trace for over five years. The years have flown by and I have achieved so much. Winning the Lloyds Banking Group Award for Rising Star of the Year 2019 at the National Apprenticeship Awards was a tremendous achievement and it was great to be recognised for my progression, hard work and commitment to my apprenticeship and Heat Trace.
I am also vice-chair of the North West Young Apprentice Ambassador Network. I am passionate about apprenticeships and I proactively seek opportunities to promote apprenticeships in schools.
My day-to-day work involves company branding, promoting the company, completing supplier approvals, creating and updating company literature, promoting Heat Trace’s apprenticeship scheme and communicating with overseas customers and suppliers. I enjoy the work and it is motivating to be able to make a positive impact in the organisation.
I am supported by my line manager to select projects to complete for my university assignments and to take full responsibility for these projects whilst being respected in the company by other employees.
Making a positive impact
My favourite part of my job is to be able to make a positive impact and see the results. I like working with a variety of people and collaborating with overseas representatives.
I will be ahead of my peers studying at traditional university as I now have over five years' workplace experience and knowledge of the working environment. My apprenticeship has increased my confidence through being given my own tasks to complete. My knowledge has increased and I have been given the opportunity to travel and work with overseas customers and suppliers.
My family were supportive of me starting an apprenticeship and were positive about the opportunities my apprenticeship would bring. Friends at school thought I should have applied to university because I had good grades at A level – they didn’t value apprenticeships at the time but now, looking back, they think my apprenticeship was the better route.
During my apprenticeship, I have been promoted from marketing apprentice to marketing assistant and I am currently marketing manager, managing a department and colleague. One day, I would like to be senior management – but one who is still striving to learn and develop progression opportunities.
I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship because you gain valuable work experience while working towards a qualification and getting paid. There are various levels and stages when you can start an apprenticeship and also at any age. With a degree apprenticeship, you get the best of both worlds: a BA Hons degree and work experience.
Emilia Hoyle is a chartered management degree apprentice with Heat Trace Ltd and Chester University. She tells her story as part of the Tes #InspiringApprentices campaign