Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust (HWHCT) is shining a light on the positive impact of apprenticeships and the opportunities they offer ahead of National Apprenticeship Week, which takes place next week.
Apprenticeships are a great way to earn while you learn and gain the necessary skills and experience for a career in healthcare.
The Trust has a history of success with apprenticeship programmes and was named the Large Apprenticeship Employer of the Year in 2022, and Worcestershire Group Training Association’s (HWGTA) Employer of the Year in 2021.
HWHCT currently supports 172 apprentices across 29 different programmes and there are a range of apprenticeships available, including registered nursing associate, customer service, healthcare support worker, and leadership courses
After 27 years of working in the NHS, Chris Cooper wanted to grow her career and applied to join our registered learning disability nursing degree apprenticeship.
Chris said : "I felt apprehension about engaging in formal learning after many years out of this context and gaining the academic skills required as I am a very mature student, but I also felt excited to be learning new things, meeting new people and facing the challenges and experiences ahead."
During the first part of the apprenticeship, Chris was able to explore new fields of nursing in adult mental health and trauma and orthopaedics, due to her extensive experience in working with people with learning disabilities.
Chris added : "If I had not been offered the apprenticeship, I would not have been able to access this qualification from a financial and practical position. I think that having varied placements widens my skills and experiences and that there [are] always opportunities to learn and contribute positively to patient care and outcomes. It is great to meet new people and keep learning, you’re never too old!".
Luc Petit, another apprentice at the trust said he applied for a level 2 customer service apprenticeship because he wanted to see what the typical world of work was like.
Luc said: It's really fun. I've felt like I've had a solid chance to increase my confidence in areas where it needed to be increased, and it's shown me that although a typical job was not as easy as I thought, rising up to the challenges of employment has been a really great experience for me."
After completing his apprenticeship, Luc scooped the ‘Commerce Personal Development Award’ at the Worcestershire Group Training Association Awards 2023 for successfully completing his apprenticeship and going on to secure a permanent position with the Trust’s IT department.
Ally Middleton, Head of Education and Clinical Development said , “We offer a range of different apprenticeship programmes and non-traditional routes into the NHS, to anyone aged 16 and over. For people who need to earn a wage while learning, an apprenticeship may be what you need. It is truly rewarding, and our team are here to help all apprentices have the best experience possible; paving the way for great career prospects for you and outstanding care for our patients."
To find out more about apprenticeships, visit the Trust’s careers website.