From education to employment

The story of Leanne, who proves gender is not a barrier to trade skills apprenticeships & training

If you thought “trade” apprenticeships were an option only for “the boys,” then think again. Advanced Apprenticeships offer a real alternative to traditional learning and allow all young people to learn and achieve qualifications through a combination of education and on the job training.

21 year old Leanne Bateman is employed by LJ Monks Ltd who is registered with electrical regulatory body NICEIC and based in Yorkshire. She bucked the stereotypical career options for women and is currently in the third year of her electrical installation apprenticeship with training provider JTL.

NICEIC works with JTL, the recognised work based learning to the building services engineering sector, to promote electrical apprenticeships for young people to its members.

Jim Speirs, chief executive of NICEIC said: “Vocational training provides school leavers with a marketable skill in an industry which is in short supply of skilled labour. It gives them an alternative to debt-saddled academic study and allows them to pursue a career where they can work on interesting projects and earn good money. We have women NICEIC Domestic Installers who trained as electricians as a stepping stone to setting up and running their own successful businesses.”

Leanne was the first female apprentice to be recruited by LJ Monks Ltdand feedback received, from both her JTL site supervisor and College tutor, hasbeen very positive. Making great progress with her apprenticeship, she has already done a wide variety of work from water treatment works, to distribution centres and is now working on a large security gatehouse. This has given Leanne the opportunity to travel with her job and shes worked up and down the country on a number of important projects.

Leanne talks of her experience: “I decided on doing an apprenticeship because I didnt want a dead end job and I knew that it would open doors for me and give me options later on. I wanted something hands-on and varied; something that opened doors for me in the future. I decided to become an electrician and applied for an apprenticeship through JTL with the council and LJ Monks.

“My colleagues and fellow apprentices completely accept me, even though Im the only female apprentice on site at the moment. They just treat me like Im one of the team and the fact that Im a girl doesnt come into it. I dont get special treatment because of it, but I dont get any stick for it either”.

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