Here's my story...
As some of you are probably aware I started at Kingfisher Print & Design about three and a half years ago. I finished my A-levels at a local college and I was undecided about university. I was almost certain I wanted to pursue a career in graphic design but I wanted to be 100% sure. I approached several companies asking if I could intern for a year. Kingfisher Print & Design agreed to take me on as an intern and three months in they arranged an apprenticeship for me - I have never looked back!
My apprenticeship was in desktop publishing and pre-press and was supported by the BPIF apprenticeship scheme, it has allowed me to learn about designing artwork for print, I have also gained valuable knowledge in customer service, print and finishing. My apprenticeship has had a very positive impact on my life, it has confirmed to me that graphic design is one of my passions. I am an ambitious individual who thrives on challenge – I have quickly learnt this is mandatory when working in this fast paced industry!
Having worked at Kingfisher for over three years I feel I have grown as an individual, gaining confidence and independence which has allowed me to think proactively without guidance. The skills I have gained working in a commercial printer, as well as a design studio, have allowed me to understand exactly how digital artwork needs to produced for print. This experience in the print industry shows just how invaluable apprenticeships are for developing 'real-life' skills.
My current role is a Junior Graphic Designer - I work in a team of 7 studio designers. My artwork design ranges from business cards to multiple page magazines for a wide range of clients. As the youngest member of the company I feel I add an extra dimension!
My ambition to continually learn is nurtured by Kingfisher Print & Design, my training hasn’t stopped and I have set myself goals to achieve. I have been fortunate enough to assist with the launch of our Communications Toolkit web2print site and I am now embracing a new challenge and beginning to learn the ropes of marketing. All the information I have gleaned is down to the people of Kingfisher Print - I couldn’t have asked to work with a better bunch of people! They have all passed on their invaluable knowledge to me ensuring I am adequately equipped for the current industry.
I believe that anyone can learn from my apprenticeship experience. I have proved to myself and everyone at Kingfisher just how much knowledge and information you can gain by undertaking an apprenticeship. Degrees are always seen as a high achievement, but what people don't realise is that hands-on experience is invaluable. Without all of that ‘real life’ experience of working on the job I wouldn't have half of the knowledge I have gained to date. Apprenticeships are underrated and young people and employers can learn so much from them, I most definitely think they are the way forward for the future. You can find out more about becoming an apprentice by signing up to the government apprenticeship vacancy matching service.
Undertaking an apprenticeship really is one of the best decisions I have ever made. Give it a go!