Apprentice Ashley Terron didn’t stop at being the UK’s number one bricklayer, he went on to be named the best young bricklayer in the world.
Ashley talks us through his top tips for a successful apprenticeship.
Do your research
When I was at school all the kids wanted to be the best at something - the best footballer, the best dancer. For me, building was the family trade, so it felt right to go into bricklaying. I was lucky I knew what I wanted but it is important to research all the career opportunities available. That is why The Skills Show is such an important event. It provides hands-on experiences enabling young people to learn about different careers and find out how they can get the right skills to secure a job.
Applying for an apprenticeship
I worked for my father’s bricklaying company while studying for a City & Guilds Level 3 NVQ at Warrington Collegiate. Completing an apprenticeship meant that I could earn while I was learning and also gain recognised qualifications. At The Skills Show you can meet with representatives from different employers and advisors from the National Careers Service who can talk you through different apprenticeships available and how to apply for them.
The National Apprenticeship Service offers hints and tips on how to work your way through registering, searching and applying for your dream apprenticeship job. You can also watch 'How to apply for an Apprenticeship' and visit apprentice.tv to hear from real life apprentices. These resources are really helpful when looking to stand out and make a great impression with potential employers.
Ashley perfecting his winning masterpiece
Enter WorldSkills UK Skills Competitions
When I was an apprentice I entered the SkillBuild Competition, which is part of WorldSkills UK Skills Competitions. These competitions are run by Find a Future and are an excellent way for apprentices to really hone their skills. You get to compete against other apprentices from all over the UK so you can benchmark your knowledge and you get additional training from industry experts. It really enhanced my apprenticeship and I was fully supported by my college. After excelling in the WorldSkills UK National Skills Competitions, the finals of which are held at The Skills Show, I was invited to take part in the selection process to represent the UK at WorldSkills Leipzig 2013, the world’s largest international skills competition. I competed against 23 other young apprentices from all the over world, over four days of competition and I won Gold. To be named the best young bricklayer in the world is amazing and I know I will never experience anything like it again.
Don’t stop there
Completing my apprenticeship and competing in the WorldSkills UK Skills Competitions has really helped my career. I have recently completed an HNC in Construction and Property at Salford University my experience helped me secure my current role as Assistant Site Manager at Redrow Homes. Earlier this year I was also awarded a British Empire Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List recognising my services to skills. This really does show that with an apprenticeship you can go onto achieve great success.
The Skills Show takes place from 13 to 15 November 2015 at the Birmingham NEC. To plan your visit and book your free place visit theskillsshow.com