National Apprenticeship Week, 6-12 February 2023, brings together the entire apprenticeship community to celebrate everything that is amazing about apprenticeships. The theme for this year is ‘Skills for Life’ and in recent years, Xaverian College has been celebrating the success of many students that have progressed to sought-after Higher and Degree-Level Apprenticeships.
Xaverian alumni, Ellie Rafferty from Stockport, studied A Levels in Chemistry and Psychology and a CTEC single award in Health and Social Care and completed in June 2022, right before starting her Apprenticeship with Autotrader.
Ellie attended open days for many different colleges to see what options were available and eventually decided on Xaverian, she commented: “A lot of my friends were going to Xaverian and that is naturally a big decider for a lot of people. I made my decision after speaking to the Pastoral Team who were very reassuring about the support I would receive, and it turned out to be true – I received lots of support from them when I needed it.
“I enjoyed the atmosphere of being on-Campus and also the time I spent making new friends and meeting new people. My favourite subject was Psychology, but I never saw myself taking any of my subjects further. Therefore, when I was looking for Apprenticeships, I was very open-minded as to what the job would entail.“
Ellie chose to follow a Level 4 Sales Executive Apprenticeship with Autotrader, instead of going to university because of the benefits associated with an Apprenticeship, such as working for an employer alongside gaining related higher-education qualifications. Ellie said: “I spoke to people that I know are at university or have graduated to find out more about their experiences. After this, I realised university wasn’t for me, so naturally I started looking for jobs and the Apprenticeship at Autotrader really caught my eye. I undertook research to gain honest opinions of the business and the job role of Account Manager to get an idea of where the qualification would take me, in what industry and on what salary.
“My role in Autotrader is in Business-to-Business (B2B) sales. I have a base of around 80 car dealerships, and I contact these on a regular basis to help them see value in working with our business to increase their sales. I work with my clients to make recommendations on improving the quality of their adverts/stock and their sales approach to maximise their impact in the marketplace. I also assist my customers with general technical/knowledge queries.”
Ellie plans to continue working at Autotrader and progress to an Account Director role, which is a more senior version of the current training she is undertaking. Ellie commented: “I’m so excited for the future and can’t wait to see where my career takes me. I am honestly very proud of myself for completing College and now being successful in my Apprenticeship with Autotrader, and how much my confidence has grown during this time.”