Tue 8 Feb 22
To celebrate National Apprenticeship Week and showcase the apprenticeships available at Essex, we asked Olufunmilayo (Olu) Oludare to tell her apprenticeship journey.
I work for North East London Foundation Trust (NHS) as a Community Rehabilitation Assistant Practitioner, providing timely intervention and preventing unnecessary hospital admissions.
My job allows me to empower people, provide independence, promote dignity and choices to patients, which are at the centre of our care. I am so passionate about my role, but I realised that there was a limit to how far I could extend this passion without further training and academic skills. I am currently studying for a foundation degree in health science (healthcare assistant practitioner apprenticeship). The course is perfect for anyone that wants to gain skills and knowledge in health care, the modules are student friendly, and easy to navigate.
I opted for an apprenticeship pathway to get hands on training which would enable me to acquire theoretical knowledge and link it to practice in the workplace. The apprenticeship provides a foothold to three opportunities at once - an opportunity to earn, gain experience and have sustainable employment. In summary, apprenticeship is a win-win situation with a massive outcome for the apprentice, especially a mature student like me.
Before commencing the apprenticeship programme, I was not as confident as I am now. I was working as a traditional rehab assistant, providing intervention at a lower level. With the skills and knowledge that I have acquired, I now deliver my role confidently with the right knowledge and following the relevant legislations and framework.
It is so rewarding to have the ability to work autonomously, having my patients believe in me, and I complement my team effectively.
Change your mindset: New apprentices should change their mindset to embrace their new status as an apprentice by planning well to ensure a work life balance.
Network: Make use of existing networks at university and integrate with students’ unions and WhatsApp groups for peer support.
Self-motivated: Take personal responsibility for your learning by creating time for independent, self-direct learning and support from your tutors.
Confidence: You need to harness your inner strength and belief in yourself that “You can!”.