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Shannon Smith has a master plan. This 17 year old knows exactly where she’s going and that’s off to sunnier climes working as a children’s rep for a holiday company. There’s a few hoops to jump through first but Shannon is well and truly on her way thanks to an Apprenticeship she is midway through at The Oak Tree nursery in Whitchurch.

Since 11 years of age, Shannon knew she wanted to one day work with children and decided that the best way to get qualified and gain experience would be through an Apprenticeship. She explains: “I much prefer learning on the job and thought I would gain more as an Apprentice than being a full time student.”

Shannon has completed the Level 2 Childcare framework and to be eligible to apply for a holiday company children’s rep role she will need to be qualified to Level 3 which is the next stage in her studies. Each week a day is spent at College where Shannon learns the all–important theoretical aspects of her job which she is able to apply once back in the workplace. The close relationship the College has with her employer means they are fully up to speed with her studies and give her practical tasks which complement the theory learned.

Each day Shannon is at the nursery for a 7.45am start and until 6.00pm. From serving meals to supervising constructive play, Shannon is busy keeping the children fed, clean and entertained and the nursery clean and safe.

Has it been worth it? It has indeed – Shannon would happily recommend an Apprenticeship as she believes you learn more and you’ll enjoy the job more.