After completing his A levels, 21 year old Carl Tanner was planning to go to university to do a degree course in Illustration, but after considering his options, decided he’d prefer to start work and get some practical experience while he was training. Carl had been doing some research on the internet into available courses when he was contacted by The Skills Company, with whom he’d registered some time earlier.

Carl said:

“The staff at The Skills Company were really helpful. I wasn’t aware of all the range of Apprenticeships that are now available. They talked through all the options with me, and I decided to go for the Level 3 Apprenticeship in Principles of Marketing. They then set up an interview for me at Milk Design in Didsbury, and I was successful in the interview.”

Milk is a successful agency offering design and branding, digital and social marketing and specialising in the design of kid’s packs and activity sheets for restaurants and attractions.

Carl started his Apprenticeship in October 2011, and attended The Skills Company in central Manchester for one day per week. Because of the previous study he’d done, Carl progressed through his Apprenticeship in good time and completed it in late 2012.

Carl is now working as an Account Executive at Milk. He’s part of a small team and his responsibilities include meeting with clients, briefing designers, liaison with printers, producing quotes and contributing to tender proposals.

Carl said:

“The Apprenticeship gave me an opportunity I wouldn’t have had otherwise. It gave the company the chance to take a risk and employ someone without much experience and train me in their own way. If I’d started a degree course after A levels, I’d now be looking for a job like this, but without any practical experience. I’ve recommended Apprenticeships to a few of my friends who aren’t sure what direction to take.”

In the future Carl sees himself staying in the field of marketing and design, and may at some stage think about setting up his own business. Following his Apprenticeship, Carl enrolled on a Foundation Degree course in Business Management at The Skills Company, and graduated in summer 2014.

Carl said:

“At the end of the Level 3 Apprenticeship in Marketing with the Academy, one of the tutors came in to talk to us about the Foundation Degree in Business Management. I decided to sign up for it, together with a few others on the course. It was sometimes difficult to fit in the course with working full time, but it’s been worth it.”

“Working and completing this course has really helped me to develop further, I have been able to apply the theory to my work and my work to my theory. It’s been a really enjoyable experience.”