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Age Is Just A Number - Sam Witheford

There is often a stereotype with apprenticeships that they’re only for 16-18-year olds who’ve just finished school or college. However, at Mitre we want to debunk that myth, apprenticeships are for everyone! A former learner wants to help us send this message too. Sam completed her PE & School Sport Mitre apprenticeship in October 2019. It had been nearly 30 years since she had been in education, and going back to learning can be scary, but she didn’t let this stop her!

Sam was working at a school as a teaching assistant for 8 years when she was approached by the head to ask if she would like to complete the apprenticeship with Mitre, and subsequently become a PE teacher. Having to manage her own learning wasn’t something she had done before and writing assignments was something that hadn’t been a part of her life for a while; it was a change.

However, Sam had no need to worry and described her Mitre tutor Amy Neill as “A really good” and “always on hand to help out and always quick to get back to you”. We couldn’t agree more! As part of her apprenticeship, Sam completed Off the Job training which included a range of workshops, tutorials, additional tasks and resources, as well as workplace shadowing and reflection which Sam identified as

“a great way to learn in this apprenticeship”.

Completing her apprenticeship in October 2019, it wasn’t long before the COVID pandemic meant Sam was put into a teaching assistant bubble at her primary school and she was restricted in starting her new PE role. However, when we caught up with Sam recently, she was delighted to tell us that she now has four of her very own PE classes beginning in September 2021.

Sam was a fantastic learner and achieved an outstanding grade. We are so proud of her and her new role delivering PE to the children in her school.

So, what would this fantastic learner recommend to others?

Don’t worry about your age! Age is nothing but a number in the world of apprenticeships and Sam and Mitre want to drive that home. With programmes from level 2 (GCSE) to level 7 (Masters degree) they are a great option for a career boost or change. Apprenticeships are an effective way to get into a new field you want to pursue. Sam summarised by saying

“I would fully recommend an apprenticeship as you do the paperwork side but then you also get to put it into practice on the job… it was really useful.”

And if you’re considering apprenticeships, “Give it a go, upskill yourself, it opens opportunities” is the advice from this star student!

Check out Sam with her trophy from a hockey tournament she competed in! Wow! Well Done Sam!



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