Shawn Nicol, IT Apprentice, Aylesbury College

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Apprentice Shawn Nicol left a job working at a supermarket chain to pursue his dream of a career in IT – and has foundcase study - Shawn Nicol the perfect platform working as an apprentice at Buckinghamshire New University and studying at Aylesbury College.

Shawn, 21, is one of a number of apprentices Bucks New University has taken on and he joined Bucks after working for Sainsbury’s in High Wycombe. Fulfilling a dream to work in IT, he now works in Desktop Services. He said: “I was becoming frustrated with my job at Sainsbury’s and thought that if I really wanted to work in IT then I had to save some money and make the move. “I knew that if I put my mind to it I could do well in my chosen career – I just needed someone to give me a chance.”

Shawn spotted the apprenticeship opportunity at Bucks while attending an open day at Aylesbury College. His enthusiasm has impressed many at the University. Shawn’s responsibilities include managing day-to-day problems, including computer repairs; ensuring printers and other equipment are working correctly, as well as responding to staff who are having software problems.

He works at Bucks four days a week and is studying for a Level 3 NVQ in IT at Aylesbury College one day a week. Shawn is on a 12-month contract and hopes to pursue a more senior position, either inside or outside the University, when he finishes. “The apprenticeship seems to work for both parties as I have found something I enjoy and the University is benefiting from my enthusiasm, expertise and willingness to work hard,” he said.

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