Chelsea Edwards - Youth Engagement Officer

Name: Chelsea Edwards
Year Started (Apprenticeship): January 2017
Current Position: Youth Engagement Officer  

What did you do before starting the apprenticeship?

Graduated with a Welsh and Educational Studies degree, and working part time.

Why did you apply for the scheme?

I had always aspired to study the PGCE and become a qualified primary school education teacher working with young people. After much deliberation, I put aside the idea, as I wanted to gain more skills, experience and qualifications in this area first. I learnt before applying that the role for this apprenticeship requires me to deliver a range of sessions to both primary and secondary school pupils and work towards a Level 4 Advice and Guidance National Vocational Qualification, thus enabling me to fulfil my wishes.

What development have you had since being with RCT?

Since being an employee for RCT Council, I have achieved an NVQ in Advice and Guidance. It is a level 4 qualification, and allows me to demonstrate the ability to give the most effective direction into further education, employment or training to the pupils in RCT. I have also recently achieved my Level 2 Playwork Practice and Youth Work qualifications in my current role, and soon to be beginning my level 3.

Other developments include taking part in specific training in Safeguarding Children and Autism Awareness.

What were the highlights?

For me, working with external organisations has been a big highlight. As part of my role includes planning and organising events such as Careers/Jobs Fairs, Industry Days and Industry Visits for schools, we frequently contact and build close relationships with a variety of employers from different companies. This is something I thoroughly enjoy.

Being so involved in the graduate and apprentice recruitment has been an informative part of my apprenticeship. I have gained a real insight into what the whole process entails, and have been part of the interviewing panel for some interviews.

I would also add that getting familiar with the local authority policies and procedures, as well as developing my skills and knowledge in my team’s area notable highlights too.

Recommendations to Applicants:

I would recommend an RCT Apprenticeship to anyone. There are varieties of areas within the local authority that offer apprenticeships, from civil engineering to office administration work.

During the application process, I urge applicants to practise using the STAR method whilst answering their competency-based questions. Situation; explanation of the situation, Task; what were you tasked with, Action; what actions did you take to complete the task, and Result; what was the outcome. Many candidates do not follow this method therefore do not progress onto next stage of the application process.