Interview with Emlyn Bailey, marketing apprentice at Dover Harbour Board

Apprentice Eye recently caught up with Emlyn Bailey, apprentice at Dover Harbour Board.

Emlyn graduated from Reading University in 2012 with a degree in psychology before deciding to launch his career in marketing with an apprenticeship.

How did you hear about apprenticeships and what made you decide to do one?

I heard about apprenticeship schemes from friends and found this opportunity online. I decided that an apprenticeship was a good way to get into a career in marketing without the need to return to university which financially just wasn’t feasible.

Many young people assume that as an apprentice they will be given mundane, insignificant tasks.  What would you say to these people?

I was initially concerned that this would be the case, but after looking into the role and organisation I realised that I would be expected to work to the same level as all other employees.  In my apprenticeship I was immediately given my own specific role and after the first month I was treated exactly the same as my colleagues. I would suggest doing some research into the apprenticeship, the company and the role to see what is involved.

Do you find balancing work with study challenging?

During my apprenticeship I completed an NVQ Level 2 in Business Administration. Throughout the year, my work for the organisation has been my main focus but balancing the two was not an issue at all. All of my team understood that a certain amount of time needed to be allocated to my studies.

Have you been assigned a mentor and if so, how are they helping you through the apprenticeship?

I was assigned a mentor and found them to be extremely friendly and supportive. They were really clear in what was being asked of me with regard to the qualification and throughout the year helped me identify how my skills were being developed.

What are you hoping to get out of your apprenticeship?

I am coming to the end of my apprenticeship now and have been offered a permanent role with the organisaiton.

What advice would you give to young people unsure whether or not to go to university or do an apprenticeship, since you have done both?

I would say that university is beneficial in many ways and does provide opportunities for people that they may not have otherwise. Studying at university not only helps develop individual’s academic skills but also their social and life skills. However, apprenticeships give individuals the chance to gain real employment experience in careers which is crucial in today’s employment market. It also gives you a taster of the role, which gives you the chance to see if it is right for you.