Never Too Late to Pursue Your Dream Career!21st June 2013
After leaving school at 16, Roger Priestly has worked in a number of different roles. From foundry work to silver service, Roger is no stranger to the different career choices that are available to 16+ school leavers and yet has never found a job he could call a career. Until now.
Roger (50) from Walsden currently works for Lend Lease and looks after reactive maintenance at Calderdale Royal Hospital. He is coming to the end of his Level 3 Apprenticeship in Plumbing and Heating at the College after studying part-time whilst training with Lend Lease the last four years.
Roger recently won the Adult Apprentice of the Year Runner-up Award, he said: “It is a nice achievement for me at such a late stage in my life, but in an early stage in my career path and I am very happy to have won it.”
Like many people, Roger left School with limited qualifications – something that until recently would give you little in the way of career choices or development. With so many courses at Calderdale College that are tailored to individual needs and strengths, this in no longer the case as Roger explains: “I have enjoyed the challenge, from leaving school at 16 and having very little academic results at school apart from the basics to be able to assign yourself to do a City & Guilds NVQ all the way to Level 3. I have had some stressful moments, but everyone does, and now we are reaching the end of it, it is a great feeling.”
So why was Calderdale College the right choice for Roger? Many establishments offer similar training but the real deciding factor for Roger was the convenience of having a local College to offer the academic training, whilst having a local company to combine this with hands-on, industry relevant experience: “Lend Lease phoned round Leeds College of Building, Huddersfield College and Calderdale College. The proximity of Calderdale College was fantastic for us and a deciding factor – it was just the right place to come and I have really enjoyed it.”
Roger recalls how his new career first started: “Lend Lease were looking for people to further their career to become craftsmen…so I had a discussion with my mangers and they asked me if I would like to go down the Plumbing route and I said yes! Then they found me a Plumbing Apprenticeship at Calderdale College and it just went on from there.”
Like many students coming to the end of their course, the next step is always a big question. For Roger it’s all planned out. By undertaking his Apprenticeship, Roger has secured full-time employment with Lend Lease and his new qualification has also meant an increase in wage: “Now when I go back with my qualification I’ll be a Craftsman Plumber. With that also comes a bit more money which is welcome! I would like to take a year out from studying as most students do when they’ve reached their goal and continue working for Lend Lease full-time.”
If you are thinking of changing your career or looking to up-skill the College offers a variety of exciting courses from Art & Design and Accounting to Hair & Beauty and Health & Social Care. With 511 courses on offer; 177 full-time courses, 199 part-time courses and 135 e-learning courses it is never too late! There is sure to be a course or an Apprenticeship which caters to your needs and fits around you – maybe one you never even dreamed of.
Over the last academic year Calderdale Training have worked with over 130 companies from across Calderdale and the UK, if you are interested in an Apprenticeship please contact 01422 399 325.