Siân, aged 22, attended a work experience placement at the Trust when she was at school. The placement was office based and supervised. Following the placement Siân was offered a Level 2 Apprenticeship with the Trust.
Siân said “I was unsure as to which direction I wanted my career to go in but as there is such a wide variety of job roles within the NHS I knew that I could potentially work towards a long and fulfilling future.
“The staff were very caring and compassionate towards the patients.They showed that they really enjoyed their jobs and I found that very motivational. It was lovely to work there and the staff were friendly, helpful and approachable. I very quickly felt part of the team and was guided and supported by my colleagues.
“I have been with the NHS ever since my placement and I have been in a number of job roles since.
“There was a ward opening at the end of March, which took place three months after I started my Apprenticeship; this was really exciting to be a part of. I also helped other departments/wards with ordering and minute taking which helped me understand how the departments worked and also to see more of the hospital.It helped me branch out and speak to other staff members, including Managers, Occupational Therapists, Patient Activity Nurses, Nurses and Health Care Assistants.
“During my Apprenticeship I was able to work on my own initiative and given autonomy which helped me gain confidence. All of the Senior Managers were really helpful and always guided me in the right direction when needed. There was so much variety in what I did that no day was ever the same. This also helped me gain experience in other areas, such as audio typing and minuting by attending departmental meetings and taking the minutes.
“I learned lots of things during my Apprenticeship. Team working is very important. I also learnt how to use new systems and became very competent with these, such as the online ordering systems, the Electronic Staff Record system and also how to use Outlook (email/ calendars). I learned about what goes in to running a hospital as I was working with the management secretaries and personal assistants. The placement was very interesting and I learned lots of new information about mental health problems.
“Completing my Level 2 Apprenticeship has helped me gain a permanent position in the Offender Health Directorate where I am currently studying for a Level 3 qualification. I am due to finish this in March 2017 and then will look into completing another NVQ.
“My advice would be to definitely take a placement and grab any opportunity with both hands. Get as much experience as you can, as it may help you in future job roles. Do things which are outside of your comfort zone and enjoy every minute of it.”
Work Experience Week is 10-14 October. For more information visit www.fairtrain.org/work-experience-week/