Completing an apprenticeship has transformed William Hellewell’s confidence and career prospects and set him on the path to independence.
The 18-year-old completed the ICT Practitioner Level 2 Apprenticeship at South Yorkshire Housing Association (SYHA) this academic year.
William is now working at SYHA, on Rockingham Street, in Sheffield, where his role involves providing advice as part of the information technology helpdesk team.
He is also the first Sheffield College apprentice to have received the government’s Apprenticeship Care Leavers Bursary.
William’s achievements are being highlighted as part of National Apprenticeship Week, which runs until February 9.
This year’s theme is ‘Look Beyond’ to celebrate the diversity and value that apprenticeships bring to individuals, employers, communities and the economy.
“I’ve really enjoyed earning and learning in the workplace, and getting the skills and experience I need. I enjoy problem solving and the fact that no two days are the same.
He added: “If you’d have told me I’d have completed an apprenticeship doing a job I loved, a few years-ago, I wouldn’t have believed you. I didn’t know what I was going to do with my life.”
“I’ve a lot more confidence now and my ultimate goal is to run my own successful IT business and become a millionaire! It’s important to me to have very ambitious goals.”
William enjoys the independence he is gaining from having trained as an apprentice, and is currently taking driving lessons and saving for his first house.
William was also able to buy some new computer equipment with the Apprenticeship Care Leavers Bursary, which provides £1,000 in financial support to 16 to 24-year-olds leaving care.
He’s already registered a business name – such is his determination to succeed with his ambitions.
Steve Elliott, vice principal, Apprenticeships, The Sheffield College, said: “Apprenticeships are a fantastic way for young people to develop the skills to go further in their careers. Employers benefit from having a talent pipeline that they can mould to the needs of the business.
“It’s great to see William thriving. He’s an incredibly determined and positive young person who smashed his apprenticeship targets and is an inspiration to all who know him.”
Apprenticeships provide the opportunity for young people and adults to learn on-the- job skills, gain a qualification and get onto the first rung of the career ladder with the chance to secure permanent employment afterwards.
The College is the largest provider of apprenticeships in Sheffield and Sheffield City Region. During the last academic year, the College worked with approximately 850 employers supporting around 2,800 apprentices on 139 apprenticeship programmes.
Free advice is available to apprenticeship applicants, as well as employers who want to find out about the benefits and practical steps involved in recruiting an apprentice. The public can find out more in an apprenticeship question and answer session @sheffcol on Instagram and Twitter from 11.30am until 12.30 on February 6.
The College currently has around 70 live apprenticeship vacancies in a range of sectors including horticulture, childcare, business administration, sales, engineering, catering, pharmacy and human resources.