Yr Alwad! This is the moto of Level 4 Business Administration apprentice and Welsh Language Ambassador Poppy Evans. Poppy was employed as a Business Support Assistant at Carmarthenshire County Council when completing her Higher Apprenticeship programme bilingually via the medium of English and Welsh.
Read more to find out how Poppy has improved her Welsh language skills throughout her learning journey and how these skills have created new opportunities with the workplace and throughout her apprenticeship programme.
During my time as a Business Support Assistant Apprentice at Carmarthenshire County Council, I completed my NVQ Level 4 in Business Administration bilingually via the medium of English and Welsh. Although I had studied bilingually in comprehensive school, I found this experience valuable in improving my Welsh language skills as I was required to complete reports discussing my work based experiences and this enhanced my Welsh vocabulary and also ensured my continued use and maintenance of my Welsh language skills.
I applied my Welsh language skills in my workplace daily whilst interacting with service users and colleagues, corresponding and assisting with the translation of administrative documents. To formally demonstrate my Welsh language skills and in order to improve them, I attended and completed a Welsh language residential course which was funded by Dysgu Cymraeg and which was held at Nantgwrtheyrn. This course consisted of an intensive experience of improving my oral and written Welsh language skills at an Advanced Level. Whilst completing my course bilingually, I was motivated to promote Welsh language learning opportunities amongst my colleagues and the benefits of utilising them. I became a Welsh language leader and mentor which involved promoting the Welsh language, ensuring the Welsh language standards were maintained and delivered within my workplace and assisting colleagues with developing their Welsh language skills.
During these roles I developed and delivered Welsh language training to operational staff. I visited all Council depots in Carmarthenshire and rolled out the training to hundreds of operational staff which consisted of demonstrating where Welsh language training and learning opportunities could be sourced and hosting an interactive Welsh quiz.
During my apprenticeship I was also approached by the National Training Federation Wales, Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol, the Llanelli Rural Training Centre and Carmarthenshire County Council to promote apprenticeships as an Ambassador. I thoroughly enjoyed this role as I am passionate about promoting the benefits of apprenticeships. I was able to network with a wide range of individuals and it was valuable experience to add to my resume.
As a result of work experienced I gained during my apprenticeship, I successfully secured a full time position in Carmarthenshire Council as a Digital Family Engagement and Recruitment Coordinator in the Children and Family Services team. Welsh language skills were essential for this role as it involved monitoring, managing and creating bilingual social media content. This role also involved
developing bilingual recruitment and engagement campaigns and engaging with service users and members of the public bilingually.
After completing 4 years’ service at Carmarthenshire County Council, I have been successful in securing a new role in the Welsh Government. My new role will be Associate Delivery Manager in the Centre for Digital Public Services. I have no doubt that my experience generated by my apprenticeship and my Welsh language skills which I was able to demonstrate as a result, were a significant contributory factor to my securing this new role. I am excited to be continuing my career journey and moving forward to the next stage which will involve training to become a manager. My goal in school was to work in government and I could have never envisioned that I would have achieved this goal taking the route that I eventually did, however, I believe that undertaking and completing my apprenticeship was the best route to ensuring the achievement of this goal and I strongly recommend apprenticeships to all.
I am grateful to Llanelli Rural Council Training for all their support during my apprenticeship. I am also grateful to Carmarthenshire County Council for hosting my apprenticeship and to all the staff I have had the pleasure of working alongside and who have facilitated my work experiences.