Apprentices at Ingleton Wood have spoken of their “amazing experiences” of degree apprenticeships and are calling on young people and anyone considering a career change to learn more about the practical routes into construction.
For National Apprenticeship Week 2022 (February 7-13), our Practice is celebrating several of our apprentices while strengthening our commitment to investing in local people and skills.
Kai Filbert and Asma Parker joined our Colchester office in September 2021 on four-year Level 6 Architectural Assistant Apprenticeships – equivalent to a degree – in partnership with London South Bank University, with the aim of becoming fully qualified Architect Assistants.
The qualifications are known as degree apprenticeships. They were launched in 2015 to help remove “outdated stigma” over vocational qualifications. Apprentices study at university and work part-time without having to pay tuition fees.
Ingleton Wood offers degree apprenticeships for future architects, engineers and surveyors in association with London South Bank University and Anglia Ruskin University, Chelmsford.
Kai, 19, said: “The best part of my degree apprenticeship is the experience compared to traditional university. We get the opportunity to work on a wide range of real-life projects that all count towards our qualification and receive excellent support from Ingleton Wood’s expert and friendly teams. I get to experience all this practical design work now, rather than at the end of the degree, and I think that’s an amazing opportunity.”
Asma, 18, added: “I’ve always been fascinated by the built environment but wasn’t sure about the pathways. I’m a hands-on person and although I applied for university, when it got closer to the time, I realised I wanted on-the-job training while earning a wage.”
Chris Wells, 30, worked in retail for a decade before switching careers and enrolling on a four-year Building Surveying Apprenticeship Levels 4-6 at Anglia Ruskin University.
Chris said: “For an older apprentice like me, it’s good that I am treated the same as anyone else in the office and am challenged accordingly. I’m learning new software, joining client meetings, and visiting sites to carry out progress reports. There are people aged 18-45 doing the apprenticeship at Anglia Ruskin University, so it is never too late to change.”
At our Norwich office, Priyanka Shah is in the final year of her four-year Level 7 Architecture Apprenticeship, equivalent to a master’s degree, at London South Bank University.
Priyanka, 27, who was a 2021 finalist at the Royal Institute of British Architects’ (RIBA) President’s Medals, said: “Ingleton Wood have professionals in many disciplines, making me more rounded as a designer. It’s brilliant to have that guidance in the palm of your hand. And having lived through both methods of study (full-time university and apprenticeship), I can vouch for the apprenticeship route because it increases your responsibilities and you are held accountable for so much more. As scary as that seems, it really does prepare you for the real world. If you understand the commitment early, you’ll have a much smoother ride.”
Meanwhile, Building Surveying apprentice James Sutherland, a Quantity Surveyor at our Billericay office, said: “I’m enjoying watching projects develop and progress first-hand from start to finish by attending site regularly, while being a part of the financial management of the project. Apprenticeships are an amazing opportunity to get ahead because you develop skills and knowledge while getting more experience than you normally would just by going to university full time. It is also a good opportunity to earn while you learn.”
Holly Sutherland, apprenticeship coordinator at Ingleton Wood, said: “National Apprenticeship Week is the perfect opportunity to highlight the fantastic success of our latest generation of apprentices who are benefitting in so many ways from degree apprenticeships.
“We are building bridges with schools, colleges and universities to invest in local skills and grow our workforce with homegrown talent. Apprenticeships give you diverse workforces and form a key part of our People First strategy. We are also committed to lifelong learning for all of our multi-generational teams.”