I enjoyed my time at Reigate College and it played a pivotal role in guiding my career trajectory. College was a big step up from school – I enjoyed having greater ownership over decisions and managing my own workload. It instilled in me a sense of maturity and self-discipline which contributed to my readiness for the workplace. The Learning Support team also made my transition between school and College much smoother by identifying ways to support my learning needs and make exams and learning easier.

Business management was my favourite subject at school and then at College. I’m so grateful to have been taught by the most amazing teachers, whose passion deepened my understanding of the subject and helped motivate me to pursue a business management apprenticeship. Being able to study new subjects such as law and sociology complimented my business knowledge, and it was enlightening learning new subjects.

I found the Careers Department especially helpful regarding UCAS applications and applying for apprenticeships. They were always available to answer any questions and give advice on CV writing and university applications.

In February 2020, just before the pandemic hit, I went to my first assessment centre for the BBC in Birmingham. My leaving year was a difficult time to apply for apprenticeships, as many companies had cancelled assessment centres and their usual application processes. So, it was quite a worrying time waiting to hear back. I had applied to university as a back-up, but I knew it wasn’t for me so when I received the news I had earned a position on the BBC’s scheme I was over the moon.

Joining the scheme in November that year, it was really comforting starting alongside other apprentices, who turned out to be the most amazing bunch of people from all over the UK. As I learn best in person around people, working remotely for the first year was quite difficult. However, it was also interesting because the whole organisation had to adapt to working that way.

My apprenticeship allowed me to rotate throughout the BBC, with six-month placements in different teams: Daytime; iPlayer Audience Research; BBC3 Marketing; and Commercial; and Rights and Business Affairs. By the end of the two years, I had a comprehensive view on how the BBC worked and I entered my final year-long placement in Branding and Marketing. Throughout this time, my university learning was held online, once a week, with all my assessments done through coursework, not exams.

The biggest thing that shocked me at university was the range of people doing an apprenticeship on my course. It was brilliant to speak to different people who had more experience in the workplace than I did, as this hugely enriched my learning. And it was good to see that you can start your apprenticeship journey at any time – there is no pressure to do it all as soon as you leave College.

My best piece of advice would just be to talk to everyone. I have learnt the most from talking to people, finding out about them and what they do, especially if you’re unsure which career pathway you are interested in. It’s also great to have a LinkedIn profile and connect with people on there too.

I am currently in my final month of my apprenticeship and preparing to enter a full-time role with the BBC as a Business Coordinator. Once complete, I will have a professional management degree and after my end point assessment, I will have achieved Chartered Manager status. I am really excited to apply all my learning and experiences from the past three years.

Eve Wilcox

Reigate College: 2018-2020

Higher Education: Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship, University of Roehampton while working for the BBC

Currently: Business Coordinator, BBC (from January 2024)

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