National Apprenticeship Week 2023

Tawanda Mukombiwa

Name of apprenticeship:
Customer Service Level 3 & Project Management level 5

Place studied:
Leeds City College

3 and 5

2 years and 1 year

Start date/end date:
09/09/2013 – 09/2015 (Customer Service)
10/09/2018 – 02/09/2019 (Project Management)

Brief overview of your career history: Where did you start out? What apprenticeships did you study? What is your role now within WYCA?

From finishing my A Levels, I went directly into a Level 3 Apprenticeship working as a Customer Service Apprentice for Leeds City College. The Apprenticeship spanned for two years and thanks to the knowledge and information I’d picked up during my time, I was able to transition into another role within the college which then provided an opportunity to complete a Project Management qualification. This eventually led me to being an Enterprise Coordinator for the CA.

What made you want to do an apprenticeship?

Whilst in school, I’d always hear people talking about Apprenticeships and didn’t know too much about them at the time. My friend told me about the Apprenticeship recruitment event (Town Hall at the time) and after attending, it seemed like a no brainer for me! My initial thought was to go straight into an apprenticeship after finishing year 11, but after some sage advice, I decided to do my A Levels first, in case I don’t manage to secure employment after my apprenticeship, at least I can go to uni if all else fails!

What advice would you give to someone considering an apprenticeship?

DO IT!!! You have little to lose and a lot to gain.

What did you enjoy most about your apprenticeship?

At that age, it was very beneficial being in an environment with working adults. Being the baby of the team, I was very well looked after as an apprentice but it also gave me a softer introduction to the world of work as compared to going in as a graduate.

How did studying an apprenticeship help you to get a job in the Combined Authority?

My first role as an Apprentice was in the Helpzone, working with Careers advisors to support students with making informed decisions. Through this, I gained a wealth of knowledge on careers education and a better understanding of people’s needs around careers education. Because of this, I was able to progress onto different roles in the college, doing a further apprenticeship in Projects Management which all culminated in having the right skills and confidence to apply for the Enterprise Coordinator role at the CA.

Anything else you’d like to add?

People often ask if I feel I made the right choice doing an apprenticeship instead of university and the answer is always…undoubtably! For my learning style, I feel an apprenticeship gave me much more than going to university would have done and really helped me develop a lot of skills I use to this day.

Are you wanting to find an apprenticeship opportunity of your own? Click to search opportunities within West Yorkshire.