Mitch kickstarts his career in the motorcycle trade

We grill Mitch about his apprenticeship...

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Why did you choose to do an apprenticeship?

I chose to do an apprenticeship because I felt that it was the best way for me to kickstart my career in the motorcycle trade. It also allowed me to work and study at the same time. I was also very fortunate because I didn’t have any qualifications from school, but the apprenticeship with Suzuki allowed me to gain my Level One and Two in English, Maths and ICT.

What apprenticeship are doing?

Suzuki backed IMI Motorcycle maintenance and repair

What do you do as part of your apprenticeship and how much have you learned from it?

As part of my apprenticeship I spend one week a month at the Suzuki training school in Doncaster, where I take part in both classroom and workshop activities. First, we learn the theory in the classroom and then we get to put it into practice in the workshop, which is then followed by an online assessment. We are then given tasks to complete as coursework at work which is to be witnessed by another member of staff.

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The skills and knowledge that I gain as part of my apprenticeship has helped me so much at work as I am able to put what I have learnt into practice. We also have learner progress reviews which helps me keep track of my learning. My trainer Mick Sprenglewski comes to visit me at work to see and asses the work I’m carrying out and is always there to help or give advice which has helped me tolearn by having his support.

Is it what you were expecting?

It’s more than I expected, it has allowed me to gain qualifications that I didn’t think I would have ever been able to achieve. The facilities and tools that we are given are outstanding at the training school and all the staff are welcoming – they make it fun to learn.

 How much help and support do you get?

Loads – from Suzuki’s apprentice centre staff when needed. For example, when I struggled to pass my ICT level one exam my mentors helped me as much as they could and to ensure that I passed they went above and beyond to get me additional support from specialists in functional skills to give me one to one help with my work. I have now passed the exam, and my mentors continue to give me all the support and help I need to ensure that I get the most out of my apprenticeship.

What elements have you found the most challenging?

The classroom work, I prefer to work and learn with the hands-on approach –hence why I wanted to be a motorcycle technician. So, for me the academic and classroom side of the apprenticeship has been tough, however the help from the staff at the training school got me through, to pass with flying colours.

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Can you see yourself staying with your employer?

Yes, I’m really enjoying my job role and being given the opportunity to enhance  my skills with Suzuki