Apprenticeships, work experience and volunteering

Apprentices 

Westward works in partnership with local colleges offering people the opportunity of an apprenticeship which holds long term employment prospects.

Westward has previously offered Apprenticeships in Business Administration throughout several departments including Human Resources, Finance and Asset Management commencing at level 2 with some apprentices even progressing to level 3.

We also currently have direct labour operatives in North Devon who have recently taken on a plumbing apprentice.

For more information on apprenticeships please visit the official Apprenticeships website.

Meet our apprentices | Jake

I am Jake and I am a member of the IS Support team in the IT department for Westward Housing. I would highly recommend to anyone to undertake the route of an apprenticeship as it allows for on the job training giving you valuable experience within the industry whilst also adding to your qualifications.

I started off as an apprentice technician in the IT team, completed my course in level 3 for an Infrastructure Technician and BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Professional Competence for IT and Telecoms Professionals with barely any skills in IT. I am now working my way through a Computer Science Degree through a Cyber Security pathway. By then end of this apprenticeship I will have had five years of experience and hopefully a qualified degree.

Doing an apprenticeship enables you to learn lots of new and relevant skills in the working place, showing employees your progress and the achievements, you earn along the way. Along with building the experience to your job role, undertaking an apprenticeship gives you a foot into the working world along with the chance to progress your career with the qualifications that you earn.

My time at Westward as an apprentice has helped me ease into learning new information, technologies and significantly broadening my skill set by allowing me to work at my own pace and increasing my confidence in new situations that I have not previously been in. Working in the office allows me to improve on skills such as communication and teamwork. I have found with my time at Westward that other employees have continually given up time to help me with anything I require, especially members of my team helping me with my studies. Everyone has been very supportive and welcoming which has made the job more enjoyable and easier for me.

Meet our apprentices | Lucy

I am Lucy McHugh a finance apprentice in the accounts department at Westward Housing and I would recommend anyone to take the opportunity of doing an apprenticeship asLucy McHugh Finance Apprentice it allows you to gain valuable experience within a particular industry and add to your qualifications. 

Doing an apprenticeship enables you to learn lots of new and relevant experience as well as showing to employers that you have the drive and determination to achieve your goals and training.  Alongside your studying you are also employed by an organisation/business for the duration of your apprenticeship which is really beneficial because once you have completed the apprenticeship you would have a year or more worth of experience to showcase giving you a head start.  Also, you have the opportunity to earn throughout your time studying. 

My time at Westward Housing as an apprentice has improved my confidence and has helped me refine and broaden my skill set.  This is the first time I have worked in an office environment and it has helped me to improve important skills such as communication, teamwork and IT.  There is always something new to learn within my role and in the organisation.  The team I work with have continually given up their time to help me with anything that I have struggled with during my studies.  Everyone here has been extremely supportive and welcoming making my apprenticeship that bit easier and more enjoyable.

Work Experience and Volunteers

Student photo

Work experience helps you gain valuable experience in your chosen work environment.

Where possible, Westward offers work experience to a wide range of people. This includes those people from school, college, those who are trying to get into or back into the workplace and those who may be trying a new career path.

Work experience can also happen through university courses such as Health & Social Care. We offer exciting opportunities within our projects for students looking to gain experience alongside their study which can be invaluable when they are about to graduate.

If you want to find out more about arranging a period of work experience please email: jobs@westwardhousing.org.uk

Make a difference! 

Colleague improves garden at support project A ‘volunteer’ at Westward is a valuable member of the team who commits time and energy for the benefit of others, who does so freely, through personal choice and without expectation of financial reward, except for the payment of actual out of pocket expenses.

Volunteer opportunities can provide new challenges and enable people to learn new skills.

It can be a stepping stone into employment or training opportunities.

Westward currently offers the opportunity to volunteer in some of our Support Services projects across Devon and Cornwall. You can be involved with arranging support groups at the projects or even just be an extra pair of hands and learn more about the role at the same time.

If you want to find out more about becoming a volunteer at Westward please email jobs@westwardhousing.org.uk

Please note all volunteers and work experience candidates will require a full DBS check if they are participating in regulated activity.