Case Studies

Natasha Costello - Business Admin Apprenticeship Level 2

Natasha Costella is a real-life example of how Apprenticeships are for all people, including those from a strong academic background and are an extremely viable alternative to University.

Back in 2007, Natasha gained outstanding GCSE examination results consisting of nine As and A*s across all subjects including English, Maths and Science.  It was clear that Natasha was an excellent academic candidate and she progressed to FE at college and achieved four ‘A’ levels in English Language, IT, French and Critical Thinking.

Whilst experiencing a difficult period of parental separation, Natasha’s routine and living arrangements changed. Although Natasha’s mum worked in the education sector and always encouraged her daughter to follow an academic path, Natasha had lost the will to move forward academically due to her home life.

When Natasha noticed an advert for JHP Training offering Apprenticeships, she was intrigued and quickly decided that this was a clear, structured method of entering the workplace yet still receiving valuable training “on the job” without having to go to university for years.  The advert stated that the vacancy had a “Defined Career Path” which Natasha thought would be ideal as she would receive a salary whilst gaining experience and a qualification to further her career prospects.

Natasha’s talent was instantly recognised and she joined JHP Training as an Administrator at Stoke-on-Trent’s Employability centre.  She was soon offered a place in the JHP Apprenticeship Academy which would progress her training in a structured manner with a clear progression path through the company beginning with a Business Administration Apprenticeship at Level 2. 

The Business Administration Apprenticeship involvs an NVQ consisting of two compulsory units and three optional units to prove competency in various work skills within an office environment; Key Skills completion for Application of Number and Communications (AON at level 1 and Comms at level 2) and finally, a Technical Certificate for Business Administration at Level 2. As Natasha had achieved A* and A in English and Mathematics respectively, this meant that she was exempt from having to complete the Key Skill requirements up to and including level 2 – Natasha and her Assessor were therefore able to concentrate on the NVQ itself and at the same time, incorporate the Technical Certificate into her daily role.

Due to the nature of Natasha’s employment, evidence was very easily gathered on a daily basis ready for her Assessor visits in order to provide proof of competency to fulfil the units. Natasha showed great enthusiasm and a super thirst for knowledge setting herself very high standards in her everyday responsibilities.

Natasha’s future goals are to progress within JHP Training and to work in either the administration department or the sales department. She commented:

“What appealed to me about an apprenticeship, rather than university, is the fact that you’re not stuck in a room learning being lectured, you are in a workplace carrying out your job.  You gain a wage, qualifications, and experience which you can take into any part of your career. The qualifications are specific to the career path that you choose, and the experience is something that is vital, especially in today’s climate.”