A young accountant who opted for an apprenticeship over university says his decision is paying dividends, having worked his way up to a management level position with engineering giant Intelect.
And now, 23-year-old Ben Robinson from Middlesbrough is encouraging other young people to consider an apprenticeship as the stepping stone to their dream career.
Ben joined Middlesbrough-headquartered Intelect after College and completed an AAT Advanced Diploma in Accounting with Northern Skills – the apprenticeship and training arm of Middlesbrough College Group.
He’s since worked his way up to accounts manager and company secretary and now manages his own team of apprentices, all enrolled at Middlesbrough College.
Speaking out as part of National Apprenticeship Week, he said: “I did A Levels at
College and it came to deciding whether to go to university or try and get a job.
“I’d always wanted to do accountancy and the idea of earning while I was learning was really appealing. I also knew an apprenticeship would also give me practical hands-on experience, something I probably wouldn’t get at university.
“Opting for an apprenticeship was the best decision I’ve ever made and I’d recommend it to anyone!”
Ben is now urging other young people to attend the College’s ‘Drop-in-Day’ on Thursday, February 9 to find out how they could follow his example.
“My apprenticeship was the foundation to my career, and it’s paid off so far,” he said.
“I’d never have imagined I’d have worked my way up the career ladder so quickly and be working at this level.
“It pays to talk to someone about your options, and National Apprenticeship Week is the perfect time to take the first step.”
The week-long event, taking place until February 12, brings together businesses and apprentices across the country to shine a light on the positive impact that apprenticeships make to individuals, businesses and the wider economy.
Middlesbrough College Group’s group director of business engagement and partnerships, Matt Telling, said this year’s ‘Skills for Life’ theme couldn’t sum up apprenticeships any better.
He said: “Apprenticeships have huge benefits to both learners and employers but it’s not just accounting apprenticeships that add up.
“From construction and engineering to dental nursing and teaching, we deliver more than 100 courses to thousands of learners every year across all levels and would encourage anyone interested to get in touch.”
Northern Skills has trained more than 2,000 apprentices and its programmes are carried out in the workplace, meaning learners get proper hands-on experience, as well as online and in the specialist industry-leading training environment at Middlesbrough College.