Three Ron Dearing UTC students have been selected to take up apprenticeships with Hull-based KCOM after the company received 500 applications for just 10 positions.
The leading digital technology, communications and IT services provider has taken on Josh Fry, Aaron Pocklington and Brandon Thompson, all 18, as software engineering apprentices, helping them to realise their ambitions of becoming fully qualified Software Engineers.
They will complete a Level 4 qualification through the British Computer Society (BCS), the Chartered Institute for IT, over two years, working and studying at home and in KCOM’s offices.
They will also work with Birmingham-based bespoke tech apprenticeship provider Digital Native one week per month as they go through their apprenticeship journeys.
KCOM is a Founding Partner of Ron Dearing UTC and helps to shape the curriculum, offers work experience and apprenticeships, as well as providing advice, guidance and industry level project work for students.
Josh, from Cottingham, said: “KCOM is where I’ve wanted to be since I joined Ron Dearing UTC and this is a dream come true for me.
“Ron Dearing UTC’s connections with KCOM and the courses the school offers linked to coding set me up with the skills and knowledge I needed for this opportunity, and the teachers were great.
“Everyone at KCOM has made me feel so welcome. It’s perfect and I’m so pleased I can start work straight away.”
Aaron, from west Hull, said becoming a student at Ron Dearing UTC set him on the right path to secure an apprentice with KCOM.
He said: “I’ve wanted to do this for five or six years after starting computer programming at school and going into more detail in Ron Dearing UTC Sixth Form.
“The employability days that Ron Dearing UTC arranged taught us interview techniques and helped us to prepare for work. I’m so glad I went to Ron Dearing because I probably wouldn’t have got this apprenticeship without it.
“I’m looking forward to learning more about my new role. This is definitely the right path for me.”
Brandon, from Kingswood, Hull, said he is proud to work for KCOM and is excited for the opportunities ahead.
He said: “I live locally and KCOM is a great local company to work for. I did well in the interview and I got a real buzz when I found out I’d got the job. I’m so pleased to have this opportunity.
“We learnt about the types of software KCOM uses while studying at Ron Dearing UTC. It gave us a really good insight into what we were coming into.
“I’d love to continue my career with KCOM in the future and become a Senior Software Engineer or a Software Developer.”
Tim Shaw, Managing Director, KCOM Wholesale and Networks, said helping and supporting local people and their careers is close to the heart of the business and taking on apprentices will continue.
He said: “They’re settling in really well and it’s great to hear their enthusiasm and see their drive.
“They each have a mentor and a manager, and they’ll go through a structured programme over the next few months, finding out what KCOM is all about and what it’s like to work here, as well as encouraging them to think like a customer while working as an employee.
“I know how excited the team are to have the apprentices join the business. Many people within KCOM were apprentices themselves and it makes such a difference to the organisation to come through the business on a similar journey to them.
“Ron Dearing UTC’s connections with local businesses is fantastic and creates the right connections and conversations for students leaving school. We’re already looking ahead to next year and how we build on the success of the current apprentices.”