Progressing Onto My Second Apprenticeship - Amie Holmes

(3 min read time)
Hi Amie! Can you start off by setting the scene for us - what were you doing before your apprenticeship?
Hi Multiverse Community!
It’s been quite the journey. I left school at 18 to study animation at university and ended up dropping out at the end of my first year. I wasn’t getting the value I’d expected from the course and I was very isolated. My mental health was in ruins to the point I wasn’t producing the work I was capable of. I really had to ask myself whether I should be paying around £15,000 a year to be miserable. So I moved back to London in December 2017. 
I searched for 4 months rather aimlessly to find work of any description to build my confidence back up. At the time of finding, then WhiteHat, I was working at a dessert shop as a stepping stone to finding a solid career prospect.

And so how did you find Multiverse or how did they find you? What was your journey to an apprenticeship?

My ex was doing a L4 Network Engineering apprenticeship with another provider, and encouraged me to seek one out. As I was browsing job boards, I found WhiteHat/ Multiverse. Due to my creative background, I quickly established that L3 Digital Marketing would be the pathway I would pursue. I was already managing the dessert shop’s social media channels so had found a passion for seeing the follower count grow. 

In July 2018, I  sent in an inquiry form, not expecting to hear anything back, quite honestly. Within an hour I was called by the talent team for an informal phone interview and asked to prepare for a ‘Kick-Off Day’ at their offices. I had to build an online profile to be sent to employers. By the next month (September 2018), I had been interviewed and given a job offer at a Sustainability Consultancy firm in Angel. 

And what was it about your first apprenticeship that made you want to progress onto a second? 

Fundamentally, the amount I learned and grew in 18 months was astonishing. I thought that after I’d left university, that no-one would recognise that I was worth more than retail work and minimum wage. The skills I acquired, the people I met, and the tough lessons I learned have shaped me into a confident young professional and I didn’t want my journey to end there.

Now looking at the practicalities of progressing from one apprenticeship to the next, how did you approach this with your line manager and Multiverse? 

Unfortunately, I wasn’t kept on past my contract at the Sustainability firm. This was due to mental illness and changes in the business needs. I know now that this was for my growth and resilience. This happened just as the pandemic hit, so any interviews I’d had lined up had vanished.

I took a few months to heal myself and reflect on my next steps. I felt I wasn’t finished with studying, and thrived on the balance of the 20% Off-the-Job training while working full-time in industry. I got in touch with Multiverse again, in August 2020, and the talent team discussed with me the possibility of moving up to a L4. 
 

Did you face any obstacles during this process? How did you overcome these?

Well, my confidence was at an all-time low. I’ve never considered myself a ‘numbers person’ but L3 Digital Marketing had already given me a baseline knowledge of Google Analytics and coding. The wonderful talent team talked me through what L4 data analytics would entail, and how I could upskill myself while new vacancies arose. 

They also got in touch with my previous coach and raised concerns over how they could best support me going forward. By that point, I had gained enough self-awareness to recognise my mistakes and put my full effort into preparing for the new course with learning SQL and Python independently.

Around 3 months later, I got the call to say I’d been offered a L4 Data Analytics apprenticeship with Citi from November 2020. It’s at that point I realised “Wow, there’s people who really do believe in me... Now I need to believe in myself.”

What would be your advice for anyone currently thinking of progressing onto another apprenticeship?
Just...why not? Perhaps, like me, you never imagined yourself on a particular course, but it doesn’t mean you can’t learn. L4 Data Analytics is taught at a very gradual and manageable speed, and with the ability to always ask questions. If you are unsure, do some preparation beforehand to understand if you will enjoy the course content. 
A Multiverse apprenticeship aims to deliver skills of lifelong learning, networking, and opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals. How are you using the Community to help you in your career? 
I’d recommend signing up to the Mentoring Programme. It’s been the most valuable resource for me in the past 3 months, and has helped me to understand myself and how to navigate tricky situations. If you have reservations, I assure you it’s not as awkward as you think it will be and the team matches apprentices and mentors very well.

And of course, sign up to the online events. There’s something for everyone.
 

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