Tom's Story

As a kinesthetic learner I never fully adapted to the education system, which in my experience, was better suited to auditory, reading and writing learners. Due to being so keen on learning new things, this always raised questions. “Why haven’t you done this”, “Why haven’t you done that”, and my particular favourite, “You have it in you to do it, just do it”, quite possibly the most cliché and uninspiring sentence to ever be said.

Having performed at an average level throughout school and GCSEs, like many others it came to the point of decision making - do I stay on and complete sixth form, do I go to college or do I look into apprenticeships? With such lack of support and insight into my options, I settled on progressing into sixth form.

Progressing into sixth form was by far the right decision to make, it gave me time to think about where I go next. Towards the end of Year 12, the realisation of not knowing what I wanted to do really set in, and it was at this point I knew I had to do something.

From day one, as mentioned, I knew college was not a path I wanted to take, and University never interested me, I just wanted to work and make money.

I soon began looking into apprenticeships. Without fully knowing what was involved within Marketing, I applied for a job as a Marketing Apprentice at CXK. I knew to some extent Marketing involved the use of computers, good English and creativity, which ticked some imaginary boxes.

Fortunately for me, I received an invitation to an interview for this job, which at the time was the only job I had applied for. And so, I attended the interview and was successful in receiving an offer for the job, which I gratefully accepted.

I started working for CXK in September 2015, as a Marketing Apprentice. During the next two years I completed an NVQ and gained invaluable skills and experience, anything from writing letters, to generating and managing content on the company website, assisting with event management and coordination, to being in charge of company social media and producing content for all channels.

Once I completed my qualification, this allowed me to progress into a full-time permanent digital marketing assistant role, which I have held for over a year now. Gaining such a high level of experience at such an early age has allowed me to explore wider options for the future ahead, and my next aim is to achieve the job title of Marketing Executive.

To this day, making the leap and facing the transition from school to work has been one of the best decisions I have made, and will ever make. It has taught me a multitude of life lessons I never thought I’d comprehend at such an early age in my career, and the experience and skills I have learned are priceless.

Choosing to follow a vocational skill is an incredibly positive path to take, it has allowed me to start my career at such an early age, and gather at least 4 years’ experience, before most people my age have completed university.

My advice to you is, if you don’t know what to do next, if you don’t know where to go or where to be, then without a doubt explore a vocational skill. What’s the worst that can happen? At the end of it, you discover it isn’t what you want to do, then explore something else. Life is all about lessons, just don’t be afraid to take the step, you never know what you might learn.