Scholar Alumnus, Steven

Published: 12 Oct 2017 | Scholar

Since graduating from the Tyneside Scholars Programme in 2017, Steven has successfully enrolled on an apprenticeship with the Civil Service, having passed all of the competitive stages of the application process. This is a wonderful example of an exciting opportunity besides university, just one of the numerous destinations we encourage the young people we work with to consider.

Like many of our Scholars, Steven was the first from his family to move onto a higher qualification after education, “My mam is a Dental Assistant and my dad is a Food Storage Operator. My parents did not attend university, just high school”. When first considering his options, the prospect of working for the Civil Service was a strong aspiration for Steven, “The Civil Service is a very respected and hard to achieve role, which made me view the apprenticeship with high regard”.

Though Steven was only on the Scholars Programme for a year and a half, since its launch in early 2016, he describes some of the ways in which it helped him, “I felt like I was part of some highly expensive programme that would ensure I was given the correct opportunities for someone of my intellect. My life in general was changed as I became more and more confident throughout the programme”.

Alongside his studies and time as a Scholar, Steven also found that acquiring a part time job was of great benefit in improving many of his life skills. It was with this dedication to both work and study that Steven approached the application process to the Civil Service, in which he also received great support from his Villiers Park Learning Mentor.

“My Learning Mentor (Becky) was brilliant in all aspects of my school and work life. Applying and passing all of the stages of the Civil Service recruitment process showed me that my confidence with my work and social life had improved. My Learning Mentor helped to ensure that whilst I was waiting for my Civil Service results, I wasn’t just waiting. She helped me make sure that if I were to be unsuccessful, I would have a back-up plan which still applied to me”.

Following his apprenticeship, Steven tells us of his future aspirations, “I am hoping to work my way up within the Civil Service and become respected by other companies in my speciality areas (of which I will decide once experiencing them all)”.

Looking back on his experience with Villiers Park, Steven concludes with this, “Students who may be clever but not confident will never reach their full potential in their careers without some sort of push, whether this is from Villiers Park or a part time job. The bonus with Villiers is that their Learning Mentors can help you with every aspect of acquiring a job, whether it’s help with your CV or even interview and social skills”.

Villiers Park thanks the Reece Foundation for its generous support of the Tyneside Scholars Programme, which helps Scholars like Steven to reach their full potential.