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Katie Chegwin - Business Administration Apprentice (Level 3 & 4)

I am Katie, a former University of Oxford Apprentice. I joined OCTRU in October 2015 as an Apprentice Clinical Trials Support Officer, completing a 3 year Advanced Business Administration Apprenticeship with the University of Oxford.

The University of Oxford Apprenticeships scheme offers fantastic opportunities for people to earn while they learn and is committed to providing exciting and life-changing apprenticeships across all of its departments. To find out more, please click here.

Following completion of my apprenticeship, I sought a role to improve and consolidate my administration support skills. SITU employed me as Personal Assistant to the SITU Director in October 2018.

I am well aware of the system which has launched my own career and I am keen to put something back. I am heavily involved with the apprenticeship scheme and regularly offer my time to help with numerous Apprenticeship Ambassador activities with OxLep and University of Oxford. This includes, visiting colleges, helping out at career fests and networking events to speak to students and to help them in their next steps in their careers by sharing my apprenticeship story. 

Teya Agnese - Current SITU Business Administration Apprentice (Level 2 & 3) 

My name is Teya and I am the current SITU Apprentice. I am completing my level 2 and 3 Business Administration Diploma with Abingdon and Witney college whilst working with SITU. I stumbled across my apprenticeship on the GOV website and I have never looked back  – I am really enjoying both working with SITU and my Business Administration course.

There are a variety of opportunities available for apprentices to get involved with which the SITU team are happy for me to participate in. These opportunities include:

  • Training courses (with OCTRU, Oxford University and People and Organisational Development)
  • I am an Apprenticeship Ambassador for The University of Oxford and OxLEP. Myself and other apprentices regularly get involved in volunteering days to help promote Apprenticeships. This includes career fairs, presenting to students about our apprenticeship stories, attending and manning the stand at events and get involved in social media & advertisement opportunities. 
  • Attend unique trips and experiences that I would not have been able to do if I wasn't an apprentice.
  • Apprenticeship Networking & Work Shadowing -  The University of Oxford have a wonderful apprenticeship networking group where we meet 3-4 times a year to meet other apprentices and offers the chance to ask any questions or gain advice. We also offer a work shadowing scheme where you have the opportunity to experience  other work environments and pick up any tips from fellow apprentices. If you are an Oxford University Apprentice that would be interested in signing up, please contact me.
  • I am also gaining a great deal of experience, not only in business admin, but within Clinical Trials as well through my role as an Apprentice Clinical Trial Support Officer (CTSO). 

Diary of an Apprenticeship Ambassador 

Katie and I have attended numerous ambassador events throughout 2019 and now 2020 to help promote apprenticeships. We aim to attend an apprenticeship event every 1-2 months dependant of our workload. Some exciting events we have been given the opportunity to attend have included:

January 2019 - Career Fest at BMW Mini Plant in Cowley

This was the first ever ambassador event that I had attended, so leading up to it I felt quite nervous, but once I was there all of those nerves vanished. I got the opportunity to meet other lovely apprentices; we worked very well as a team and answered student/ teacher questions, handed out apprenticeship merchandise to the students and talking about our apprenticeship stories. Breakfast and hot drinks were also supplied which was a bonus! 


March 2019 - Apprenticeship Expo and Awards

This was an exciting event, hosted at the beautiful Sheldonian Theatre, and organised by the University of Oxford Apprentices team to celebrate the achievements of apprentices. At this event, we helped to man the stand, speaking to other apprentices, employers and college staff about the benefits of apprenticeships. We also helped to set up the room for the event. 


Also for this event, a few apprentices created posters in a poster competition (which reflected their apprenticeship as a whole) which is held every year at the Expo and Awards. These posters then have the potential to be used for future apprenticeship advertisement purposes. 


April 2019 - Career Fest at Oxford Academy

This event was very similar to the event held in January at the BMW Mini Plant where we spoke to students and teachers about the benefits of apprenticeships and shared our stories. Katie and I attended this event to help set up and man the stand with The University of Oxford Apprenticeship Team.

June 2019 - Apprenticeship Ambassador Meeting

Unfortunately, Katie and I were unable to attend this meeting as we were both on holiday, but The University of Oxford Apprenticeships admin and events coordinator, Melissa, kindly sent over the presentation and any notes from the meeting for us to read through upon our return. We then officially became University of Oxford Apprenticeship Ambassadors! 

June/ July 2019 - Apprentice Work Shadowing Experience 

This was a brilliant opportunity where me and another University of Oxford apprentice spent a day in each others workplace learning about each others job roles. Read more about our work shadowing experience here.

July 2019 - Help out at The University of Oxford Undergraduate Open Day 

What a beautiful day this was to volunteer; the sun was beaming and the volunteers smiles were ready to match that. This event was more aimed at guiding potential undergraduate students around the University of Oxford Campus, but it was great to share with other volunteers about my experience as a University of Oxford Apprentice! 


August 2019 - Apprenticeships Induction

This was a really fun and interactive meeting for all University of Oxford Apprentices. During the meeting, we learnt a bit about The University and The Apprenticeships Scheme. We then got our creative minds thinking and were asked to create a storyboard out of magazine clippings to portray our apprenticeship, how we got to where we were today, current happenings and how we see our futures. This was great to reflect upon so we can see how we can personally develop using our apprenticeship. 


October 2019 - Apprentice Trip to Brussels

This was an exhilarating trip that I would not have been able to attend if it wasn't for being an apprentice. Check out my blog post on my 'Apprentice Trip to Brussels.' 

October 2019 - Apprenticeship Q&A at The Oxford Science Park in Cowley

This was a really useful event to attend where we learnt more about the 'behind the scenes' of apprenticeships including how apprenticeship levy's can benefit your own and other businesses, the suggested pay for an apprentice, how apprenticeships can not only benefit students finishing school but your current members of staff and a bit about degree level apprenticeships. We also got to witness the launch of the OxLEP Apprenticeship Awards

November 2019 - Apprenticeships Expo and Awards Committee Meeting

Katie and I have offered to help at the Expo and Awards in March 2020, man the stand to speak to attendees about University of Oxford Apprenticeships. This committee meeting brought together other apprentices who have volunteered so we could discuss our action plans. 

December 2019 - OxLEP Apprenticeship Ambassador Meeting

The day I officially became an OxLEP Apprenticeship Ambassador! Other apprentices from across Oxfordshire met in Oxford to present their apprenticeship stories to each other, The University of Oxford Apprenticeships Team, and The OxLEP Team.


January 2020 - JMS Apprenticeship Ambassador Event 

The first ambassador event of the year! Katie went back to her old secondary school, John Mason in Abingdon where she spoke to students in their year group assembly. She says: "I found this very rewarding speaking in the hall where I used to have my assemblies and promoting the University of Oxford apprenticeship scheme alongside Clive Shepherd (University Apprenticeship Manager)."

January 2020 - Career Fest at Witney College

Similar to the Oxford BMW Mini Plant career fest where a group of us spoke to students and their parents about apprenticeships. 

People posing at the Witney event

February 2020 - National Apprenticeships Week! (#NAW2020)

From Mon, 3 Feb 2020 – Fri, 7 Feb 2020, it is National Apprenticeships Week. During this week, I will be attending an apprenticeship Q&A at Abingdon and Witney college to speak about business administration students about what it's like being a business administration apprentice, Katie will be going back to Abingdon and Witney college to speak to Business students 'all things Apprenticeships' on Tuesday, I will be attending a Human Library with OxLEP Ambassadors at Fitzharry’s School in Abingdon and finally, Katie and I will also be going to help out with ‘Tea & Chat’ at the University Offices on Wednesday. This will be an informal session for other apprentices from across Oxford University to attend and discuss apprenticeships. 

Teya Agnese presenting in Abingdon

In summary...

It has been an exciting year so far as an apprenticeship ambassador and our ambassador work won't stop here! We have several events already planned and many more we would like to attend throughout 2020. 

If you are an apprentice interested in becoming an apprenticeship ambassador, feel free to get in touch