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Josh was worried about his career options until he made the genius decision to choose an apprenticeship.

Josh O'Leary

Josh O’Leary struggled with traditional classroom learning at school as his learning disability meant he found it more difficult to take in complex information compared to his peers.

He also found it hard to communicate with others and make friends and so after leaving school, he worried that he’d struggle to find a career that would support his additional needs.

Finding the right path

Josh, who is now a Warehousing apprentice at Merthyr-based ELITE Paper Solutions, said:

“After school, I knew I didn’t want to pursue further education, so I looked into alternative options. When I saw the apprenticeship with Elite Paper Solutions I couldn’t wait to get started and get to know the other apprentices on my team.

“I started my apprenticeship in April 2017 and since then, every day I have learnt something new. I’ve learnt how to operate machinery that recycles confidential materials as well as recyclable household waste, and I’m starting to manage small recycling projects.”

Since becoming a Warehousing apprentice, Josh has learnt a variety of skills including project management, team working and how to communicate effectively with his peers. Having completed his Level 2 qualification, Josh is now working towards his Level 3 Warehousing Apprenticeship.

“Learning from the more experienced members of staff has really helped with my development and working closely with them has made me feel like I’m part of a family. I hadn’t really known what it was like to be successful at something before my apprenticeship, so it’s given me a real confidence boost and I’ve made some true friends. My additional learning needs haven’t been an issue on site, and it’s been great to learn from others who have similar experiences to me.”

Career progression

Josh is hoping that the qualifications gained through his apprenticeship will help his career progression and eventually lead to a promotion within the company to a supervisory role.

Josh added:

“Without the support and structured training an apprenticeship offers, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I hope that by sharing my story, I can show others that there are lots of options and different opportunities to suit all kinds of aspirations,”

Make a genius decision and get ahead in your career with an apprenticeship

Whether you're finding your way in the world of work, or taking steps towards a career change, an apprenticeship could be for you.

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