Jade Whiteoak - MK College

Jade Whiteoak

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Accounting Apprentice at Papa Johns’s

As apprentices in the classroom we all get to learn from each other.”

After GCSEs Jade felt like she had made the wrong decision choosing to study A-Levels. Read how she changed direction and is now finding it much more rewarding working as a Finance Apprentice at Papa John’s while gaining her AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) Level 4.

“When I finished GCSEs, I felt like there weren’t many options. I felt like it had been drilled into our heads that we were supposed to go to university

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, so I just chose subjects that I thought would get me a good job – A Levels in Chemistry, Maths and Biology.

But I didn’t enjoy it, so I ended up dropping out of sixth form.

I’d always enjoyed numbers, so decided to look what college courses I could do.

I joined the AAT Level 2 course part-time at MK College, and stayed on to do Level 3.

During my Level 3, I decided I wanted hands-on experience through a job, so I signed-up to emails from the College where they’d send over any apprenticeship vacancies they had, and I could apply straight away. It was very straightforward.

I also spoke to Sonia in the apprenticeships team at the College. She would phone me and give me the details of the apprenticeships I was applying for – it was great to have that background knowledge before.

She constantly stayed in contact and kept me well-updated. It was nice and reassuring that I knew what was going on.

In April 2021, I was successful in getting a role as Finance Apprentice at Papa John’s. I was over the moon because after studying my Levels 2 and 3 it was great to be able to do my Level 4 while working, so that I could visually see what I was doing at college in real life.

It’s so rewarding to have this job. And it’s great being in college with other Level 4 apprentices. As apprentices in the classroom, we all get to learn from each other and get good insights into what each other are doing.

In terms of the future, I want to stay at Papa John’s and work in Finance, then go on to do further qualifications, like ACCA and CIMA. I don’t want to set myself limits, so one day when I decide exactly what to do, I can go on and do it.”

“I wish I had done it sooner!

Just be yourself. Interviews can be daunting especially for young people who haven’t done many, but mine didn’t feel like an interview. It’s more of a conversation. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – there is no such thing as a silly question.”