Apprenticeship Case Studies

Samuel Pittman, Foundation Apprenticeship: Civil Engineering content student facing camera on computer

Samuel Pittman, Foundation Apprenticeship: Civil Engineering

Samuel Pittman (17) from Ardross opted for the Foundation Apprentice: Civil Engineering course because he wanted a change of surroundings from his secondary school and to gain an insight into his future career. 

Samuel said: “This course is closely related to what I want to do for my future career, and I really enjoy working in teams and getting the opportunity to be creative. The teaching style is very involving and interactive, and the tutors and lecturers are helpful. 

“I would like to go onto a graduate apprenticeship in civil engineering and my Senior Phase studies will help me to determine whether or not this is the right career path for me.” 

Molly Thompson, Foundation Apprentice: Creative and Digital Media content student facing camera

Molly Thompson, Foundation Apprentice: Creative and Digital Media

Molly Thompson (17), from Rosemarkie, has ambitions to be a music journalist and hopes to study media at university.

 “As it’s my second year, I've had the opportunity to work with the UHI Inverness marketing team every Friday and work on projects that are used to promote the campus and its courses, such as TikTok videos and Instagram posts, including my ‘Day in the Life’ reel which attracted at least 14,000 views.

“Going to the campus every week means I can learn things that are relevant to what I want to do, and the work experience in the marketing sector further motivates me to pursue a career in media. The Foundation Apprenticeship helps me make connections with communication professionals and build a portfolio of work which is incredibly valuable to my career prospects in such a competitive industry.

“Although it did seem a bit daunting at first, working in an office for the first time has been great and the team is incredibly supportive and easy to talk to. Having my work used to advertise UHI Inverness makes me feel as though I’m working towards something worthwhile, which has been incredibly rewarding.

“The placement has given me confidence working in a creative environment and has allowed me insight into how social media marketing works, as well as building upon the skills that I learnt in my first year of the course. Over the course of the last two years, I have learnt how to video edit, follow creative briefs, and create social media posts in professional way, much of the time whilst working within a team.

“In first year, we were given the task of creating a video to highlight computer safety. The team and I tackled this brief by creating characters and a full story line to create a short comedy clip about a Hacker. The full project was written, acted, filmed, directed and produced by the team, and I had a really great time bouncing ideas off my friends whilst still learning a lot.

“Overall, I feel as though the foundation apprenticeship has given me a head start for Uni and my future in media and will help me stand out from others when applying to Uni or a job.”

Finlay MacGregor, Foundation Apprenticeship: Civil Engineering content student on computer

Finlay MacGregor, Foundation Apprenticeship: Civil Engineering

Finlay McGregor (16) from Nairn is studying Foundation Apprentice Civil Engineering at UHI Inverness because he has always had a keen interest in the topic. He enjoys learning in a new environment, away from school, where he has formed new friendships. 

Finlay said: “I think the lecturers are very friendly and they teach in a way that is easy to understand. One of the highlights was visiting the Balfour Beatty site and we have also had the opportunity to speak to past students.” 

He hopes to move onto an apprenticeship after school and believes his Senior Phase course will help with that progression. 

“I believe that the more you put into the course, the more you get out of it,” said Finlay. 

“It is a really enjoyable and interesting course. I really like the whole community feel at UHI Inverness and how everyone is friendly and welcoming.” 

Natalia Kucharska: Modern Apprenticeship, IT and Telecommunications content student facing camera

Natalia Kucharska: Modern Apprenticeship, IT and Telecommunications

Natalia Kucharska (22) from Inverness is studying a SCQF Level 6 IT and Telecommunications Modern Apprenticeship Diploma while working at Capgemini, a technology and outsourcing company.  

“I really like that I have a chance to mix studies with my current work life. It is great to be able to upskill within the company I work for and the industry while still having a good work-life balance,” said Natalia. 

“I would recommend an apprenticeship programme to anyone, especially people looking to change careers, learn something new or simply progress in their current career. It is a great way of learning new things and gaining knowledge.  

“My advice to anyone starting an apprenticeship programme would be to regularly keep in touch with the assessors, especially if struggling with the material, as they are very accommodating and can provide great help and explanation to what is required of an apprentice”.   

Natalia found out about the modern apprenticeship opportunities through her work, as Capgemini works closely with UHI Inverness. 

“I wanted to progress my career within the IT industry further, gain more knowledge about the subject and eventually move onto more security-related sector of the industry,” she said. 

Natalia also studied the NPA in Professional Computer Fundamentals during the first semester and in her own time she is using online courses through work to expand other industry-related skills and knowledge.  

“I have received great support from my assessors at UHI Inverness, and I am really enjoying the mode of teaching. While completing the NPA qualification during the first semester, I was attending college classes one day a week while also working on my portfolio for the MA diploma. It was a good balance of both instructor-led classes and self-learning,” said Natalia. 

“I feel that I expanded my knowledge regarding modern networking, security and how its approaches help in modern computing environments, and server administration. Everything I have learned so far during my apprenticeship will help me progress my career, 

“For now, I would like to continue my studies and further expand on the knowledge I already gained during the apprenticeship. I do believe that the studies gave me more confidence and skills to perform better within my current role at Capgemini.” 

Linzi Dean: BA Graduate Apprenticeship, Early Years and Childcare content woman standing on beach

Linzi Dean: BA Graduate Apprenticeship, Early Years and Childcare

Linzi Dean (46) is studying for a BA graduate apprenticeship in Early Years and Childcare while working at a local preschool. 

She said: “I have gained confidence overall and knowledge about the sector of childcare. After having my own children, I wanted to be within the early years sector as I was fascinated by how children learn and start to understand the world around them. 

“By working daily within the preschool and combining it with studying I have gained more knowledge of the why and how things are done along with the confidence to carry out what I have learned. 

“The apprenticeship gives you a door into the sector. It also enables you to have the comfort of working within the career you want and gaining the qualifications. It is hard on the outside looking at a career you want so much and not knowing where to start because you don’t have the qualifications.” 

Linzi appreciates the support she has received from UHI Inverness, particularly the catch-up meetings and workshops.  

“I’ve had a great personal academic tutor who has helped me every step of the way, along with lovely tutors who have also helped. And I’ve been supported by my place of work which has also helped a great deal.”