Ask the apprentice - Emilie Salkeld

Emilie Salkeld is currently on a Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship (CMDA) at Manchester Metropolitan University. Here’s how she is finding the programme and what she’s learnt so far from being an apprentice with the Service:

How did you get your Apprenticeship? 

I applied internally for a degree apprenticeship. During the application process, I had to complete an application form and be interviewed. I then had to apply to the university by completing an assessment and their application form.

What is it like being an Apprentice working for Cheshire Fire & Rescue Service?

I have not long started my apprenticeship however, the support I have received so far has been incredible. I have access to a mentor of HR leadership development who I meet with regularly. My line manager has also been very supportive in helping me gain exposure in areas I need to develop my knowledge. Everyone wants to see you succeed and will go the extra mile to help.

What learning activities have you been doing in your off-the-job learning? 

My line manager is very proactive and helps seek out development opportunities to help with my units such as observing meetings or identifying subject experts. There are many training sessions provided by the university which also count as off the job training.

What has been the best part of your Apprenticeship so far?

It has been a fantastic networking opportunity. My cohort have various backgrounds such as United Utilities, Coca Cola and the NHS. We all learn and support one another throughout the programme.

How has the Apprenticeship helped you achieve your career goals, and what do you hope to do next?

The apprenticeship degree has the best of both worlds. The degree side of the qualification will allow me to build my knowledge on the theory of business management whereas the apprenticeship will allow me to apply the skills and behaviours of a good manager into daily practise. I hope that in utilising these attributes, I will be able to progress within my career into more roles with more responsibility.

What tips do you have for people who want to do the same apprenticeship as you?

Don’t underestimate yourself! You will be surprised by how much you do know and what support is available to you through work and university.

We caught up with Emilie 4 months into her apprenticeship, she told us:

“The course has been extremely beneficial in my current role as I am able to apply the theories learnt directly into my work and the wider organisation. Not only do we get to learn the theory, but we also explore topics that are relevant in today’s society. I have been supported throughout my time on the course. The university provides a number of short courses to assist with writing for those who are not used to writing academically and provides a Skills Coach who meets with you three times a year to discuss progress and acts as your single point of contact. CFRS provides a mentor who has experience of undertaking a degree whilst working, and a Leadership Development Advisor is also available to support you.”

Last updated: Friday 25 June 2021

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