Life as an Apprentice

When I joined the strategy and architecture team in January I was embarking on a new career and unsure what my new job would entail as I had not previously worked within the IT or Higher Education sector.


A few months into my apprenticeship and employment, I can say that this role has been nothing short of superb; I have been involved in a variety of activities ranging from, but not limited to, meeting with customers, speaking and meeting with suppliers, arranging online demonstrations, gathering and reporting on statistics from pipelines, software testing and representing TIS across the wider University.


The work that I have been involved in has been challenging yet rewarding, devising an automated way for statistics to be taken from the Business Partners Pipeline to simply show the Senior Leadership Team what has been happening in the last few weeks involved a lot of work as well as a lot of input from the BP’s, a similar thing was done for the Technical architects. Researching and finding solutions for the HESA phone survey difficulties was also an interesting task as it involved me speaking to several suppliers. I also spent a few hours looking at the CIS systems with Richard O’Brien which was a real eye-opener to the amount of work and effort that goes into the back end of something to make it as simple as possible for the front end user. I shall soon be spending a couple of days a week in the PMO office which I am looking forward to as it gives me an insight into that department.


My apprenticeship requires me to attend classes at South Devon College once a week, currently we are looking at Web Architecture and Computer Systems, specifically in the Hardware side of things with Servers, Routers, Hubs and Switches.


I have recently represented South Devon College at the National Apprenticeship Week, where we gave advice and guidance to school children in their final few years of school to show them how apprenticeships work and how they are superior to ordinary college courses due to the range of benefits an apprenticeship can offer.


My major college highlight to present is that I had been chosen by my peers to be project lead on a task involving the company Bay-Cycles which is co-owned by a member of Torbay Council. Becoming a Project Lead was a new experience for me as it has given an opportunity to enhance my communication, interpersonal skills as well as my management skills. My main duties of being a project lead has seen me managing relations with customers as well as my team, arranging meetings and deciding the best way to move a project forward, this is a challenging and difficult task but I find it extremely rewarding and look forward to continuing with these opportunities.


As my time with Strategy & Architecture continues I will be writing bi-weekly blog updates; I feel this will allow me to reflect on the work I am completing and knowledge I am gaining, it will also be a great way to demonstrate to potential future apprentices the work I do here.


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