A QUIRK of fate turned two weeks of work experience into a year-long apprenticeship for a teenager from Ellesmere Port.
Last September, Jack Hair arranged a fortnight’s work at a small business in Deeside though his dad Rob Ankers. Rob has a civil engineering business at Old Marsh Farm Barns in Sealand and he approached husband and wife team Mike and Sarah Hawkins of web company Set Your Sites to ask if Jack could get experience of the working world.
Sarah, of Handbridge in Chester, said: “When Jack came to work with us, one of the websites we were working on was for a company called Scientiam, which manages apprenticeships.”
Mike added: “We were looking to expand our business and Jack had impressed us.
“He is presentable, he can talk to clients and has a great attention to detail.
“We gave him a third week of work experience and then decided to take him on as an apprentice.”
Former Whitby High School student Jack said: “At school we’d only really been told about apprenticeships in things like engineering. I’d never really heard of a business administration apprenticeship.”
Scientiam is now managing Jack’s apprenticeship and Mike added: “It is very important to realise that this is a three-way partnership. It has got to be structured.”
From April 1, the Government is offering small businesses an extra incentive to take on apprentices with three-month wage grants available.
Mike added: “At the end of this year Jack will have a good portfolio together to help him get a good job.
“It might even make him more employable than a university graduate and he won’t be saddled with £27,000 worth of debt.”
For information on apprenticeships visit www.scientiam.co.uk.