GET STARTED - June 2021

FIRST of all, let us just take a moment to welcome you back to the June edition of GET STARTED where we have handpicked some exciting opportunities for you to find work, skill up and crack on with some personal development.

Our theme this month is Learning Through Experience and so we're shining a spotlight on Apprenticeships this month as well as focusing on how you can make sure you are making the best out of your experiential learning.


If you are starting out in your career, or even if you’re looking for a career change an apprenticeship is a really good way of learning while on the job. 

Apprenticeships also tend to get a bit of a bad reputation due to a perceived element of low pay – but there are some well-paying apprenticeship schemes out there (with some included below).

So, what are you waiting for? Your next opportunity could be right on your doorstep.

Accreditation Apprentice – NCFE

NCFE is an educational charity and an awarding organisation with a core purpose to ‘promote and advance learning’ for a fairer society.

As an Accreditation apprentice with NCFE you will be responsible for providing advice and guidance to new and existing customers on NCFEs accreditation products and services, as well as supporting with the application process. You will also carry out proofreading, quality checks and input data accurately in line with relevant procedures and pay attention to detail, build strong relationships with internal and external stakeholders, building trust and influencing others.

This is a fixed term contract up to 18 months, working 37 hours a week with a £16,000 salary.

Click here to find out more.

Multiple Apprenticeships - Oddballs

Oddballs are a nationally recognised, vibrant and energetic company. With the release of their Training Academy, Oddballs are looking to bring aboard a cohort of young talented individuals in a variety of roles and positions!

With a brand-new facility in the North Tyneside region, a work culture which is modern, relaxed and built around social activities, and scope to progress your career into senior positions Oddballs could be your perfect next opportunity.

To find out more you can visit this Facebook page or watch some videos from their current apprentices here:

Apprentice Textile Technician

Embroidery Technician

Or you can email Georgia at

Planning Apprentice – Virgin Media

This is one of those well-paid apprenticeships (initially paying £20,000) working with Virgin Media in their planning department.

At Virgin Media planners are responsible for keeping their network ahead of the game, enabling them to continue expanding their network. They also liaise with internal departments and customers to ensure their needs are being met.

This is an 18-month apprenticeship, working 37.5 hours a week with a £20,000 salary.

Click here to find out more.

Apprentice Community Activator Coach – Simply Sport

If the idea of sitting behind a desk on your apprenticeship is just not your bag – why not take an apprenticeship in something a bit more active?

As an apprentice Community Activator Coach you’ll be working alongside experienced coaches to support the delivery of PE in nursery and school settings, as well as supporting other extra-curricular activities.

As this will be taken place in a school setting you will need to clear an enhanced DBS certificate. Own transport is essential due to the need for travel.

This is an 18-month apprenticeship, working 30 hours per week with a weekly salary of £159.

Click here to find out more.

Finally, if these apprenticeships are not for you then don’t forget you can visit the Apprenticeship website yourself to find all the apprenticeships in your area.

"for the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them" ARISTOTLE.

Learning Through Experience

‘Learning Through Experience’ is one of the fifteen EntreComp competencies and can be characterised as ‘using any initiative for value creation as a learning opportunity. Learning with others, including peers and mentors and reflecting from both success and failure - both your own and those of other people.'

Also known as experiential learning you'll have no doubt done a lot of this during your lifetime already - learning to cook by cooking is one very common example.

Learning through experience also has incredible benefits – such as allowing you to experience the real world (budding entrepreneurs getting to find out what it’s like to run a business for example), it can help your on the job confidence and also creates opportunities for creativity (another one of the EntreComp competencies) by allowing you the opportunity to think of new solutions to existing problems.

Because we reckon you've done quite a bit of this already, we thought we would instead give you some hints and tips on how to reflect on any and all experiential learning you may do - helping you get the most out of your experience.


This one is pretty straight forward – do the thing! Whether its learning to cook, your newfound apprenticeship or those old science experiments from high school go do it (although it might be hard to get your hands on a Bunsen burner).


Now we know this is a hard one for those of you who were perhaps learning something on your own, but you know what they say – sharing is caring.

In a group setting we might ask you to explain what you did (in simple terms), what you experienced as you were learning and was easy and what was difficult.

Instead, though (unless you have the benefit of learning alongside others) write it down for yourself – so can you simply describe what you have done while learning, how that made you feel and the pinch points as well as what you found easy?

Reflecting like this is an important skill that you likely do intuitively – but writing it all down helps in the long run.


Right – so you’ve got the answers to the questions above. It’s now time to process these and figure out what’s important.

Did you face any issues or problems repetitively? How did you – how could you overcome this next time around (or as you continue your learning journey).


So, you’ve done the learning, you’ve reflected on it and you’ve process it – so what?

Now what you need to do is to connect to the real world – which is incredibly easy if you’re doing an apprenticeship – not so much if you’ve just learnt how to darn your own socks (I don’t even know what that means, so kudos if you do).

How is what you’ve learnt important to you and your daily life – what benefits are you going to see, what benefits are you or could you bring other people?


So, we’ve done the ‘so what?’ now it is time for the ‘now what?’

What are you going to do with your newfound knowledge and skills – is it continuing with your career with further learning, helping others to learn and understand or is it simply just a sense of life improvement?

Remember a lot of skills are transferable – so how might you use these newfound skills in another setting? Perhaps in the home, classroom, or another place of work?

Oh – and be proud of what you have learnt and achieved!

Perhaps your next step could be to take these new found skills and apply them in a different way – even becoming your own boss?

If you are curious about turning your skills into a side hustle or business, but not sure what opportunities are available for you then you could check out FIRST’s free course in Understanding Enterprise or make an enquiry for further information.


  • Talking Therapies - If you are struggling with mental health, but feel you don't want to trouble your GP then you can self refer yourself. Don't suffer in silence contact talking therapies for free, friendly, confidential support.
  • Samaritans - If you or anyone you know may be at risk of suicide you can call their free listening service for free 116 123 .
  • Campaign Against living Miserably CALM - Provides listening services, information and support for men at risk of suicide, including a web chat.
  • Kooth - Counsellors available until 10pm every day. Free, safe and anonymous online counselling for young people. Check whether this is offered in your area.
  • Cruse – Cruse offer bereavement and counselling for anyone who is going through loss. You can contact them via their website or by calling 0808 808 1677.


Lockdown Rules

You can find the most up to date version of the lockdown rules here which we recommend you check on a regular basis to ensure you continue to comply with the law.

The next step in the roadmap out of lockdown is on the 21st of June, however at this point it is difficult to speculate if the changes on that date will go ahead due to ongoing difficulties with new variants.

Please remain vigilant and wear a face covering when required to do so, and if possible get the vaccine when you are eligible. 

Thank you for joining us this month and make sure to return next month for our hand-picked opportunities chosen especially for you! Remember, that if these opportunities aren't right for you, they may be relevant to a friend or family member so give them a nudge and send them our way.

If you'd like to join our Newsletter so that you can get a monthly reminder direct to your inbox the first Saturday of every month please sign up here.

Finally, if you're a business or organisation and would like us to shout out about your opportunities you can contact us here.


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