Eat, sleep, CELCIS, repeat

08 March 2018

Topic: Voices of young people
Author: Stephanie

Stephanie is a Modern Apprentice at CELCIS, and here she talks about landing her first ‘real’ job at only 16. Modern Apprenticeships combine a qualification with on-the-job experience, letting young people work, learn and earn at the same time.

Pictures of Stephanie - one with Nicola Sturgeon

Before starting my modern apprenticeship as an administrator at CELCIS my day consisted of koka noodles, binge watching Netflix and sleeping. Although this might sound like the ideal life it wasn’t.

During my pre-work hibernation period I stumbled across an ad on the University of Strathclyde website - they were looking for a Modern Apprentice in Business and Administration. Of course I jumped at the chance, I figured if I don’t get it at least I tried. That was my mind set right through to the interview. I was shocked I had got that far but I put 110% into my interview and hoped for the best, and after three days of absolute torture waiting to hear, my angel/line manager phoned to tell me I had the job!

Supported from the start

When I started at CELCIS, with no experience, it was really daunting but I soon realised that with the support of everyone around me I could tackle anything that is thrown my way. Working in this sort of environment has made me re-evaluate all the ’plans’ I had made for my future.

Actor Will Rogers said “you will never get a second chance to make a first impression”, and starting at CELCIS is when that quote really hit home. This is my first ’big girl’ job and I didn’t want to mess it up and I think for the first few months I was so focused on not ’messing up’ that I was doing myself a disservice. I guess the first thing I learned from being at CELCIS is that not knowing everything is okay, asking questions is okay and learning from mistakes is okay.

Structure and routine

Going from a part-time weekend job to working full-time was not easy, 7 am wake ups are hard, and it has taken me time to get into a routine. I feel that working at CELCIS gives me the structure that I never knew I needed in my life. But I enjoy my job and I enjoy being around people, especially the ones I work with. I am given support in the role and I am also mentored and it’s the best of both worlds as they’re supporting my personal and professional growth.

Evaluating my goals

My life goal has always been to be a lawyer but being at CELCIS and seeing all the amazing work that every single person in here does, and how such a large group of people are all working together to achieve a single goal has made me think that there are other options that I want to explore and I couldn’t be any happier about that.

I would strongly encourage other young people to apply for a modern apprenticeship – it’s a good foundation and great way to find out what’s on offer and what you can achieve if you venture out of your comfort zone.

Find our more about Modern Apprenticeships on the Skills Development Scotland website.

The views expressed in this blog post are those of the author/s and may not represent the views or opinions of CELCIS or our funders.

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