Apprenticeships that support young people to realise their potential, transform their future and gain #skillsforlife

This Apprenticeship Week we are celebrating the role that apprenticeships play in supporting young people to realise their full potential and transform their future.

We utilise 80% of our UK Apprenticeship levy to fund around 30 apprenticeships across departments such as IT, engineering and packing, as well as MBAs, professional courses and qualifications such as ACCA.

We have taken an innovative approach to utilising the remaining balance of our Apprenticeship levy, funding four apprenticeships at one of our charity partners, 15billionebp. Through sponsorship of these apprenticeships, we are enabling 15billionebp to support more young people to realise their full potential, transform their future, and gain #skillsforlife.

We asked two of these apprentices, Abida and Yusuf, to tell us about their apprenticeships.

Abida Anjum

Level 6 Careers Guidance Professional apprenticeship

Tell us a little about yourself

My name is Abida. I joined 15billionebp as a project officer to support the work experience team to secure work experience placements for young people in Newham. I am currently undertaking a Level 6 Careers Guidance Professional apprenticeship.

Tell us about your apprenticeship 

The Careers Guidance Professional apprenticeship is a two-year long online course. I have one day a week to focus on coursework. I am able to apply what I am learning on the course every day, for example interviewing techniques and lessons planning.

I work within secondary schools in Newham delivering careers information, advice and guidance services to young people. I help them overcome barriers affecting their progress, make effective decisions and take positive action to aid their progression to education, employment and training opportunities.

Why did you want to do an apprenticeship?

I thought an apprenticeship would be a good way to get hands on-experience while learning and earning a salary. I chose Careers Guidance because I learnt a lot about societal inequalities in my degree and I felt I could apply that knowledge in my day-to-day role, making sure young people have equal access to education and training opportunities, helping them achieve their full potential regardless of their background.

This year, the theme for Apprenticeship Week is #skillsforlife. Not only is your apprenticeship helping you learn important skills to provide information, advice and guidance to young people, but you are also helping those young people in Newham learn their own skills to develop their careers. Can you tell us more?

I am helping students learn skills that will help them work towards a successful career of their choice. I help them understand what their options are, how to look for vacancies, and write applications. I provide guidance on careers in medicine/law/psychology, what makes a good doctor, software engineer etc. as well as CV workshops to encourage students to take initiative in developing their employability skills, which is a #skillforlife.

Yusuf Islam

Level 7 Accountancy apprenticeship

Tell us a little about yourself

My name is Yusuf and I am 21 years old and I have a BCS in Finance from University of Westminster. I have always had an interest in the finance sector which strongly influenced what subjects I studied and what degree I chose at university. I would consider myself quite capable with numbers therefore I always had a plan to pursue a career in finance, specifically accounting.

Tell us about the apprenticeship you are currently undertaking?

The apprenticeship I am currently undertaking is an Accountancy & Tax Level 7 Apprenticeship with the chance to become a chartered accountant at the end. I am currently studying the ACCA qualification. My role is Accounts Assistant Apprentice working alongside the Head of Finance of 15billionebp. 15billionebp is the largest education business partnership in the country.

Why did you want to do an apprenticeship?

I wanted to do an apprenticeship because of the career progression it allows me. I believe apprenticeships are fantastic opportunities to kick start a career. The competition for apprenticeships is high indicating the demand for them. So I am extremely grateful to 15billionebp, and to Tate & Lyle Sugars for funding the apprenticeship, for giving me the chance to pursue this career only 1 month after completing university.

I believe the greatest benefit of an apprenticeship is on the job learning, such as networking opportunities, ongoing support from the employer, peer-to-peer support and social benefits. I am learning as I go and there’s no limit to what you can learn in a work environment. Working with senior employees also enables me to strengthen my skillset and allows me to gain experience, which will allow me to thrive later on in my career.

What do you think the apprenticeship will offer you in the long run?

The main benefit is the ACCA qualification and 3 years of work experience. I feel that employers are less interested in academic qualifications when looking for a potential employee but work experience is what stands out to them. Apprenticeships provide a perfect mix of technical training and hands on industry experience. Also, the immediate exposure that I gain on how a business operates, specifically, how a finance department is run, is a major advantage as it enables me to learn and apply new skills whilst also gaining a recognised qualification.


Tate & Lyle Sugars has worked with 15billionebp for over ten years providing young people in Newham with the opportunity to experience the world of work first hand, through work experience placements, primary school visits to our factory and mentoring. Learn more about 15billionebp and their work to inspire young people to achieve their potential and thrive in their careers.