Toni has taken four in total during her 15-year career at Pearson, starting with an apprenticeship in Customer Services at Level 2, and most recently completing a Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship with Pearson College.
A boost in confidence and new skills
As a mum of one, Toni returned to work when her son turned seven. Pearson felt like an obvious option giving the opportunity to just work during term times. However, being out of the workforce for so long had taken a toll on Toni’s confidence and she began to consider quitting. She confided in her manager who suggested she did an apprenticeship.
Completing an apprenticeship in Customer Services at Level 2 allowed Toni to regain her confidence in the workplace. She later took further apprenticeships in Team Leadership and Management and went on to become a team manager. Later, when her son was a bit older, she went one step further and took an apprenticeship degree.
At first Toni found, as a mature student completing a degree apprenticeship, that younger students absorbed the information much faster. However, she quickly found her experience when it came to people management was valued by the other students, who would often come to her for help on the subject and gave her the nickname “Mummy Toni.”
Aside from the initial confidence boost, Toni found the apprenticeships have made her much better at her job and she is now much more skilled in using data for work.
As Toni became more accomplished at her role, her manager gave her opportunities to grow within the business, being able to speak to mentors from other parts of the firm was incredibly helpful in allowing her to realise her career goals.
Finishing an apprenticeship in lockdown
Toni finished her degree during lockdown. At first, the switch to tech was difficult but the university adapted to learning from home quickly. At work, like everyone else, she found it a challenge at first, and while she misses the office chit-chat, her team adapted quickly, and she’s found she is undertaking a lot more independent problem solving. When the regulations allowed, she even organised a catch up in the park for her team.
Ambitions for the future
Toni has become an apprentice learner mentor, mentoring two students at Pearson College and enjoys supporting and challenging them in their work. At home, her now adult son, who took an apprentice himself, has been busy as an essential worker in a care home.
Location: Harlow, Essex
Job title: Centre Support Manager