Meet Darcy | National Apprenticeship Week 2024

My name is Darcy. I recently completed my level 3 spectacle maker apprenticeship with Specsavers at the Uckfield store which is where I still currently work as a fully qualified lab technician

At the end of my apprenticeship, I achieved a distinction with 100% across all criteria. I was in complete disbelief that I’d actually accomplished my assessments. It was something that I was genuinely proud of myself for achieving.

I started working at Specsavers in Uckfield after I finished my GCSE’s at 16. Throughout my time at school, I knew that I would struggle with going to college. It wasn’t something that I could see myself doing for the next few years. Instead, I started looking into different apprenticeships in the area that were more suited to me. I wanted to learn on the job whilst earning a salary.

When I first started working at Specsavers, I was anxious and wasn’t comfortable speaking to new people. After working here for a while, I felt my confidence had improved quite a lot, along with my work ethic and being able to ask for help when I need it etc. By being on the program, I’ve learnt that I’m capable of achieving much more than I believed and to not have so much self-doubt.

In store, I am supported by my manager, Tom. Tom has previously completed the same apprenticeship as me, so getting his feedback and experience is really useful. I’m also massively supported by my apprenticeship coach who I had regular visits from to discuss my progress.

The best thing about being on the apprenticeship is the amount of confidence it has given me. I’m very much still a shy person, but it’s clear to me how far I’ve come since day 1 as a person who would’ve never thought that I could do it. I’ve also made lifelong friends whilst being here. They are the most supportive people who have pushed and encouraged me to be the best version of myself.

As for the future, I’d like to consider taking on more responsibility at work and possibly looking at more supervisory roles or even Lab manager one day.

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