National Apprenticeships Week: Sports apprenticeship the right track for The Sheffield College’s Hannah

To mark the 10th anniversary of National Apprenticeship Week, AoC Sport is celebrating sport apprentices and the positive impact they have in their colleges and communities.

While the apprenticeship reform provides an opportunity for colleges to develop new provision and build new relationships, at AoC Sport we are reflecting on some of the excellent practice currently happening in colleges. We will also share some profiles of how apprentices have progressed into employment.

To continue the week, we spoke to 22-year-old Hannah Lindley, who is an apprentice at The Sheffield College.

What apprenticeship framework are you following?
Last year I began studying at The Sheffield College. I was on the Activity Leadership apprenticeship framework and after successfully completing this apprenticeship I am now on a Level 3 Sport Development apprenticeship.

How does your apprenticeship work?
As well acting as my training provider, the college is also my employer. My role is to increase regular participation in sport and physical activity amongst students, particularly those who are not very active.

My role involves me working with local partners such as National Governing Bodies (NGBs), the local County Sport Partnership (CSP), as well other community sports providers.

Once students are up and active, I then provide exit routes for them either within the college or the their local community. My job role means that I become an integral part of college and student life, and an advocate for sports development within the college.

I also mentor work placement students – these students can either come from the local universities or surrounding colleges, and they shadow me and see what my job role includes so they can develop their existing skills and gain valuable work experience. This also helps my personal development as it gives me a taste of how to manage staff.

Another part of my role is to recruit and develop a team of sports ambassadors, and these students help to deliver and promote activities across the college.

Why did you choose to do an apprenticeship?
I chose to do an apprenticeship instead of going to university. This was because in an apprenticeship you can gain practical an relevant experience while you learn, and this was perfect for me as I learn best when I am in a working environment gaining real life experience.

Apprenticeships create working relationships with local partnerships which gives me practical experience in the job role I am hoping to end up in. This means that I already have links with useful contacts and organisations when I finish my apprenticeship. A real positive thing about apprenticeships is that you earn while you learn, meaning that when I am fully qualified I will come away with a qualification as well as other coaching certificates and I won’t be in any debt.