Finding and training your future stars

Being an apprentice at Starting Off


I’m Max, i’m 17 (18 in a few days oi oi) and I’m currently doing an NVQ level 3 in IT with Starting Off!

I’ve been an apprentice with Starting Off for 8 months now. I work at a digital agency primarily designing social media content and managing social media accounts. After registering with Starting Off they got back to me within 3 days saying that there was an interview opportunity at a company called All Things Management.

I was bricking it. I had never had an interview in my life. I’d had previous jobs but only at a pub and a milk round which I got both jobs on the spot. I arrived at my interview about 20-30 mins early and was plucking up the courage to go though the door. I eventually did it and the interview went well and I was offered to come back for a second interview which I did and this one also went well and I felt proud of myself.

It had been a couple of days since the day I was told I would hear any news, so I decided to call myself as the anticipation was killing me. Dan, my director, answered and offered me a position! Must have been beginners luck!

I started my job and here I am now loving it! Creating loads of fun content and even writing pieces for a business publication. I hated college a lot, and this apprenticeship, excuse the cliche, has been such a breath of fresh air. I feel as though the work I’m doing is contributing to the ‘real world’ and I definitely think this opportunity has given me space to mature up and set the ball rolling with my future career not only that it’s a massive confidence boost not only because of the job but also because of getting through the interviews and working in an office is quite surreal to be honest! I never thought I’d be where I am at the age I am.

Obviously it’s not all real world and you do have to earn a qualification however personally I find the NVQ work so much better as opposed to GCSE and BTEC work as things are put into context and you feel the work you doing now is going to contribute to things you do in the future.

I would recommend Starting Off to anyone looking to grow up a little bit and get out into the ‘real world’ it’s the best alternative to full time education. I wish I had of started an apprenticeship as soon as I left school rather than wasting a year at college.

Max Baker.