Nailsworth trainee Shaun gains confidence through bricklaying apprenticeship
BRICKLAYING may be very different to graphic design but Shaun Hatcher is getting stuck in and is increasing in confidence.
The 23-year-old, of Nailsworth, is currently training as a trowel occupations apprentice.
From the age of 10 Shaun grew up in Spain where he lived with his family for 11 years and spent five years working as a graphic designer.
He returned to England with his friends, family and girlfriend two years ago and quickly started a job as a labourer with Wotton-under-Edge building company S&C Bennett Construction.
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Eager to help his development and keep him as an employee, the firm allowed Shaun to undertake an apprenticeship so he could develop his skills in a working environment while studying for recognised qualifications at South Gloucestershire and Stroud (SGS) College.
Shaun said: "Bricklaying is very different to graphic design but I really enjoy it. I like the company I work for, the people I work with and the hands on nature of the job.
"Having the opportunity to develop in the trade and get recognised qualifications has helped my confidence and made me more determined to succeed.
"The support I am receiving from both my employer and college tutor is helping me to become more competent."
Glyn Hillier, brickwork lecturer at SGS College Stroud Campus, said: "Shaun has been studying at SGS College for just over a month and is demonstrating excellent practical skills and ability. He pays great attention to detail and works with a very neat and tidy manner.
"It is great to see employers identifying the skill needs of their workforce and supporting them through apprenticeship schemes just as S&C Bennett Construction have done with Shaun."
The upcoming Skillsfest 2013 takes place at Gloucester Rugby Club on Tuesday, March 5 and brings together businesses, schools, young people, parents and training providers to find out about apprenticeships and career opportunities.
It is run by the Gloucestershire Apprenticeship Challenge group, which launched a new campaign in December to raise awareness of how apprenticeships can make a difference in the county.
The campaign aims to get 1,000 young people to sign up to be recruited as an apprentice.
The Citizen, Gloucestershire Echo and Stroud Life-backed campaign is run by GFirst, which drives Gloucestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, in association with Gloucestershire College, South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, EDF Energy, Delphi and Gloucestershire Engineering Training Group. Visit www.glosskillsfest.co.uk. To sign up for an apprenticeship visit www.apprenticeships.org.uk