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Date issued: 16 August 2018
An 18-year-old from Wivenhoe has gone from being an intern at Colchester Borough Council to becoming one of the authority’s latest apprentices.
Harry Fox joined the council’s Systems Team for five weeks last August as an intern, as part of his BTEC Computing Level 3 course at Colchester Institute.
His role saw him computerising records of planning applications and matching them with the relevant properties to provide a full planning history of buildings across the borough. This not only provides a helpful one-stop shop of information for the borough’s planners, but also for owners and potential owners of properties across Colchester.
He enjoyed it so much he undertook some casual work with the team during his second year at the Institute where he received three D* qualifications for his Computer Level Three BTEC course – the highest grades he could achieve.
Following the successful completion of his studies, Harry applied to become one of the council’s newest intake of apprentices to further continue developing his skills as a web and systems apprentice within the Digital Development Team.
He joins seven young people aged 16-plus who are getting the chance to experience the working world through a year-long, full-time, structured training programme and get paid while learning. They receive quality on-the-job training, job shadowing and support to develop professionally in return for their hard work.
They are the second group of young people who have taken part in the council’s bespoke award-winning apprenticeship scheme, which has seen apprentices working across a range of services including Events, IT, Museums, Leisure World, and Council Tax and Benefits.
Harry said: “I am delighted to have been given the opportunity of becoming an apprentice at the council as it is giving me the chance to build on the skills I have learnt during my course at Colchester Institute.
“I really enjoyed my internship at the council and this new step will enable me to learn more about the systems and software we can use to benefit officers in the council and residents across the borough as well.
“Ultimately I would like a job in software development and this will give me great experience and support in helping me achieve that ambition.”
The council’s apprenticeship scheme, set up after the introduction of the government's apprenticeship levy, mirrors the aims of its Better Colchester campaign in helping to deliver a positive future for people living in the borough.
Cllr David King, Portfolio Holder for Resources, said: “Harry’s story is a fantastic one. Not only does it show what can be achieved with hard work and perseverance but also that this council is a great place for people to learn and develop.
“Our apprenticeship scheme gives young people from all backgrounds the chance to get paid while learning and developing new skills that will stand them in great stead in their future careers.
“We also ensure that during their time with us the apprentices work on projects that make a real difference to the lives of our residents. So their success is great for them and brings benefits for us all.”