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National Apprenticeship Week – Meet Our Apprentices

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) takes place from the 6th to the 12th of February and is an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of apprentices and reflect on the positive impact they make to our businesses and communities.

This year, we spoke to some of Alfred H Knight’s current Apprentices to see what their experience was like and find out what skills they have learned and developed along the way.


Meet Our Apprentices



Lily Cross

Apprentice Laboratory Technician



Aaron Dunne

Laboratory Scientist Degree Apprentice



Darcy Foster

Apprentice Laboratory Technician



Robbie Taylor

Apprentice Accounts Assistant




Alfie Saunders

Commercial Support Assistant



Declan Seddon

Apprentice Laboratory Technician



What made you want to pursue an apprenticeship? 

Aaron: I wanted to work as soon as possible after leaving education and apprenticeships allow you to gain a huge amount of experience as well as a qualification, all whilst earning a wage and leaving you with no debt from tuition fees.

Robbie: I came to AHK off the back of achieving a university degree in Business & Management, wanting to pursue a career in accountancy. It became apparent that for the job role I was seeking, I would need to complete further qualifications. It was suggested to me that an apprenticeship scheme would be a good opportunity to engage in these studies, whilst working in full-time employment.

Lily: An apprenticeship program has the advantage of gaining a qualification as well as having hands-on experience. I now have a further understanding of my role, which has benefited me greatly.


What support have you received during your apprenticeship journey?

Alfie: AHK has supported me extensively throughout my apprenticeship journey, from weekly catch-up calls with my manager to discuss my progress on the course, as well as sessions with my tutor to help to connect my course to my work. My manager has made sure that I have all the allocated time I need in the week to complete my apprenticeship work.

Declan: AHK has supported me throughout my apprenticeship in various ways, including monthly meetings with the Learning and Development team to discuss my progress both in work and during my studies. Additionally, the supportive atmosphere created by my work colleagues boosts my confidence in my work.

Robbie: I have been supported by various mentors during my apprenticeship who have introduced me to the world of accountancy & explained things in a way that has helped me tie my studies back to real-world examples.


How has your apprenticeship impacted your personal skills and career development?

Lily: Due to having hands-on experience and being in a working environment, I have learnt what it means to be part of a team, problem-solving and key communication skills.

Declan: My apprenticeship has allowed me to build my confidence whilst working within a professional environment, as well as giving me the necessary laboratory skills in order to enhance my career.

Darcy: My apprenticeship has not only given me an opportunity to start my career but also progress further and provide plenty of opportunity to grow within the workplace. My apprenticeship has contributed to my time management, organisation and problem-solving abilities to name but a few.


How has your apprenticeship helped you grow both professionally and personally?

Aaron: Personally, completing my apprenticeship has made me a more confident and hardworking person with more creative ideas that I can use in different parts of my life. Professionally, it has taught me more in-depth knowledge surrounding my job role and provided me with training on various skills that I can use in the workplace.

Robbie: My apprenticeship has given me the opportunity to work in an office environment, something I had not previously experienced. It took a bit of time to adjust but the experience has benefited my confidence & ability to work in a team.

Darcy: Going back to college has made me realise how much I want to prove myself. Being on an apprenticeship scheme has made me feel like I have a lot more control over my career, which powers my work ethic and drives me to study much harder.


How has your apprenticeship prepared you for your future career path?

Aaron: Throughout the course of my apprenticeship, I have recognised the scope and variation of job roles which can be undertaken by a laboratory technician, which has therefore opened numerous pathways for me to choose from in the future.

Alfie: My apprenticeship has prepared me for my future career path by giving me insights into people’s roles around the business that interest me. It has prepared me by giving me exposure to senior colleagues to see how they got to where they are, what it took them to get to their position and how I can take advice from them to further my own career path.

Robbie: During my apprenticeship, I have worked closely with senior members of staff in a variety of different situations. This exposure has given me an insight into what type of things I could encounter if I follow a similar career path to my peers & helped prepare me for how I would handle myself in comparable situations


What advice would you give to someone considering an apprenticeship program?

Lily: An apprenticeship is a fantastic way to gain independence and gives the opportunity to develop. I have personally found it more beneficial than going to university straight out of college. Try and get some relevant work experience before applying for an apprenticeship. Even if this is very small, it will make you stand out from the rest of the candidates as competition for apprenticeships can be tough.

Declan: I would strongly recommend an apprenticeship program to anyone considering it, as it would enable them to gain an insight into a working and learning environment, as they would be able to apply knowledge from their studies to their day-to-day working tasks.

Alfie: Definitely do an apprenticeship, obviously it’s not for everyone but If someone has even considered doing an apprenticeship it’s probably their best option. You’ll meet people from all backgrounds, ages and responsibilities. What you can learn and pick up on an apprenticeship will leave you in very good stead for whatever you do in the future.


Interested in a career at Alfred H Knight? Click here to check out our careers page for more information.