Six-week work placement leads to job for teenager

Modern Apprentice Ruth Minto
Modern Apprentice Ruth Minto

A six-week trial working in the office at Pearsons of Duns has set Ruth Minto off on a career in business administration.

The 19-year-old, of Ayton, started at the family-owned retailer, in April 2015 for a six-week subsidised by Skills Development Scotland’s employability fund and organised by Borders College.

It was clear very early on in that trial period that Ruth had an aptitude for the office and administration work she was learning about at Pearsons, and after her six weeks were up, she was offered a full-time role with the company.

Keen for Ruth to develop her skills, Pearsons enrolled her on a modern apprenticeship course, and she completed it in 12 months.

With an SVQ level-two business administration MA under her belt, Ruth is now responsible for day-to day management of the firm’s 130 biomass and 125 Fuel Express customers.

Monty Pearson, managing director of the company, said: “We are really proud of Ruth’s achievement. She excels at her job and is very popular with all our customers and staff. She has a positive, friendly attitude and shows real commitment to her work.”

More and more employers like Monty are beginning to appreciate how modern apprenticeships help them to develop their workforce by training new staff and upskilling existing employees.

For individuals, a modern apprenticeship, is a job which lets them earn a wage and gain arecognised qualification.

Each year, more than 25,000 people start a modern apprenticeship, combining a qualification with on-the-job experience. This lets people work, learn and earn at the same time.

There are over 80 Modern Apprenticeship frameworks – from healthcare and financial services to construction and IT. These have been developed by sector skills councils, in consultation with their industry, and are available at four different levels, some equivalent to a degree.