Shafiat’s Story

Itook part in NCS (National Citizen Service) in 2014, and later found my apprenticeship with NCS Trust in November 2016. I absolutely loved the programme, and if I didn’t take part in the programme, I wouldn’t have known about this experience to further my skillset!

In my spare time, I go to the gym a lot. I live a healthy lifestyle and try to be creative with making new dishes to expand my diet even more. I love to read as well, especially on the commute to work – it’s definitely a passion of mine. From my experience as an apprentice, I know that I want to start my own business in property development. I’m in the middle of starting one at the moment, and I’m hoping that with this experience, I’ll fulfil my dream to have my own property development company in the future. I’m already saving up, thanks to my apprenticeship!

I applied to university to study law. I thought that was what I wanted to do before I heard about this apprenticeship. My parents wanted me to go to university, but I was never really sure. I know it’s a great path to follow, but the university route didn’t open many doors for me at this time in my life. This administration apprenticeship is giving me hands-on work experience which I could easily relate to within a law environment in the future if I wanted to.

I’m a tactical person, and I like to experience things first before I seriously commit to something. I didn’t want to go to university without trying out other jobs because I wanted to get the feel for what I want to really do for the rest of my life. It is already giving me an insight into going to university. I have a different perspective on it now, and I’m still considering it but I’m not 100% sure I want to go. I chose to study with this events and administration apprenticeship because I wanted to keep my options open to get a better feel before I make any decision about the future.

At NCS Trust, I work with the events team. I work closely with my line manager to host and organise events. I have to be creative and come up with innovative ideas. I also handle the logistics side of things like making sure people get all the necessary information they need, and contact guests. I also have had the opportunity to sit in meetings and take minutes – my manager is quite open like that and allows me to experience things I didn’t think I would. I’m also able to spend time in other departments to see what it’s like. This week, I get to spend some time in the marketing department – something I know I wouldn’t have thought I’d be interested in if I went to university.

I’ve got a high level of responsibility at NCS Trust because I know that everything I do is going to have a big impact on the team. As a result of this, it is really furthering my career more than I imagined. If I go to an interview they can see how far I have come, from what I was three months ago to who I am now – I notice a massive change. I’ve already gained so much from my apprenticeship – my biggest achievement is how my confidence has increased. I can now present to a big group of people, which I wasn’t as confident to do before. I have also gained IT skills and I constantly learn something new every day. I look forward to coming in the morning!

I’m really enjoying my training with Step Forward. The whole process is so smooth, everything I do is related to work. The work can be a stretch knowing I’ve got targets to reach, but it’s just like having deadlines in the workplace – from this, have learnt to manage my time better.
I’d recommend an apprenticeship to anyone, especially to people that were in the same position as me. It was obligatory for me to apply to university at college and my parents really wanted me to go. But for people that aren’t aware of what they want to do and are forced into the uni lifestyle, they should keep their options open as they don’t want to waste a year and £9,000.

If you’re looking for an apprenticeship, you need to be open-minded and courageous. Take it as something positive – a new environment, a new insight, a new chapter in your life. Take it as it comes, if it goes well you’ll know what works best for you.

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