Two UCLan employees, Britt Kille and Gary Westlund, have recently completed Degree Apprenticeships, to help progress their personal development and bring new skills to their teams.
Higher and Degree Apprenticeships are a key part of the University’s offer, to both businesses and learners. Apprenticeships are a great way of upskilling current staff to fill skills gaps within your business. The University have ourselves utilised Degree Apprenticeships, providing two current staff members with the skills to deliver growth, provide fresh ideas and innovation for their teams.
Britt Kille completed a Business and Administration Apprenticeship in 2019, to develop her confidence and skills in her role as Mobile Team Leader and Administration Assistant within our Catering Team.
Having left school without any formal qualifications, Britt was keen to pursue a career development opportunity and, with the support and encouragement from her line manager, this Apprenticeship provided the perfect opportunity to do just that. Britt was given designated time within her working hours to complete coursework and attend sessions and was able to find a balance of work and study that worked for her and her team.
She said: “I was particularly keen to learn more about computers and develop my digital skills. It was only coming to UCLan that I got the confidence to do courses and I was really spurred on and encouraged by my line manager.
“The thought of doing an exam was terrifying for me, but after my first one, I developed so much confidence. That was a highlight for me, as by the second exam I was so much more relaxed and I didn’t doubt myself anymore. It made me realise that you should never believe you can’t do something. If you are in the right setting and you’ve got the right support, you can do anything you set your mind to.
“I got more out of my Apprenticeship than I thought I would and I was given the time, while in work, to focus on my course – I was fully supported with this.”
"I got more out of my Apprenticeship than I thought I would and I was given the time, while in work, to focus on my course – I was fully supported with this."— Britt Kille, Mobile Team Leader and Administration Assistant
Catering Services Manager David Grime added: “Britt worked really hard at her Apprenticeship and it was so rewarding as her manager that I was able to support her journey and success. As a manager I also benefited from the learning and experience Britt gained from her qualification.
“Many of the skills she learnt she now uses on a day-to-day basis and it is also really good to be able to use Britt’s experience to encourage other colleagues to go on training and development, which further enhances skills within our team.”
Gary Westlund completed his ILM Leadership and Management Apprenticeship in just over a year. During that time, he was given two promotions, going from Timetabling Assistant to Timetabling Partner within our Academic Registry Team. While he admits the course did require real hard work and commitment, he says the juggle was definitely worth it – and that he has been able to walk away with a free qualification that has developed his skills and knowledge.
He said: “The tutor was really good and I developed skills in project management, accounting and team management. It isn’t a Mickey Mouse course – there is quite a lot of work, but if you don’t mind that, then it’s free, the majority of it can be done in working hours and you do get the support.”
Click here to find out more about our Degree Apprenticeships.