Andrew's role at council earns him nomination; YOUR FUTURE.
STAFF at a department of Coventry City Council are so impressed with their apprentice that they have asked for him to be put forward for a national award.
Darren Watson and colleagues from the environmental protection department, based at Broadgate House, have nominated business and administration apprentice Andrew Baird for the Apprentice of the Year award organised by the Learning and Skills Council.
They have been extremely pleased with how 16-year-old Andrew has fitted in to the department that deals with a variety of issues such as noise, pollution, nuisance and air quality in and around the city.
Darren said: "Andrew has proven to be very mature for his age, intelligent and extremely hard working.
"He has really understood the role of the department within the community and the wider issues surrounding it."
Soon after Andrew started in September 2006 he was thrown in at the deep end when two key administrative staff left the team.
Darren said: "Andrew has taken control of the admin function for the team proving himself to be very reliable and adaptable within his role.
"More recently he has worked on reports for senior colleagues using his initiative to rectify any problems that he incurred along the way."
But it's not all office work. Andrew has also become involved in some of the work the department delivers around Coventry such as a community volunteer project based at Stoke Heath Primary School.
He said: "It was a great experience to work with the project. We built a wildlife garden in the school grounds for the children and everyone has been delighted with the results."
Andrew was attracted to the apprenticeship route after deciding that staying on at school or going to college weren't for him.
He said: "I'd heard about apprenticeships through my school and during my work experience.
"Heart of England Training has a good reputation so I applied through them and I was soon offered this position at the council.
"I would recommend the apprenticeship route to anyone who wants to get involved in 'real working life', I think it's giving me a great head start in my business career."
Andrew hopes that his efforts will help him to move up the professional ladder. He is making good progress with his qualifications and should start an advanced apprenticeship later this year.
To find out more about apprenticeships, contact Heart of England Training on 024 7663 0703.
IMPRESSIVE START... Andrew Baird and colleagues at Coventry City Council's environmental protection department.