Meet Fernham Homes’ Ambitious Apprentice

To mark National Apprenticeship Week on 6th – 12th February, our apprentice, Mary Matthews, has spoken about what made her choose an apprenticeship within the construction industry, what her experience has been like so far and where she sees her journey in the sector heading.

After achieving impressive GCSE grades at school, Mary began studying A-levels in sixth form, however, once realising further education was not where her ambitions lay, she branched out to look for other options. Mary comments: “Early on in sixth form, I realised that A-levels just didn’t suit me. I felt like I had outgrown the setting of school and found myself questioning whether I really enjoyed my courses and if they were worth my time and effort. After numerous meetings with a career advisor, I decided that an apprenticeship was what I wanted to pursue.”

Despite deciding that mainstream education was no longer for her, Mary has taken a lot of inspiration from her time studying. She explains: “During school, my favourite subject was history and my interest in this was apparent both within and outside of the classroom; my passion paid off as I achieved grade 7 in my exams. I have been lucky enough to travel to multiple heritage sites and cities across England, visiting many architecturally significant buildings from different periods. These visits are where my interest in property stemmed from. Many people will see a building and not think twice about it or appreciate it, but I see the construction, time and effort that a whole team has dedicated to a project.”

Since realising her passion for history and architecture, Mary began her search for an apprenticeship position. She comments: “I believe that an apprenticeship role is what’s best suited for me as I can learn whilst on the job which enables me to use my experiences to gain well-rounded knowledge from all areas within a business.”

Mary had heard of Fernham Homes prior to applying and discovered the apprenticeship opportunity on the Government website, as she explains: “My father works in the construction industry and had mentioned to me that Fernham Homes was a reputable and well-known company so I was delighted when I saw they had an apprenticeship opening. I furthered my research into the role available and became even more intrigued. Having the chance to work within all aspects of the company and learning how each sector of the business functions made me desperately want the position.”

Since joining Fernham Homes, Mary has been enjoying the variation of work within her daily routine and has been developing her skillset each day. She comments: “In my role, no day is the same and I am constantly learning and completing new tasks for different members of the team. I really enjoy this varied set up as it ensures there is never a dull moment in my week.”

Although Mary has only been at Fernham Homes since January, she has already been considering where she sees her career path heading and what section of construction would be right for her. She explains: “As I am still new to the property industry, I am not clear yet on what my future career entails but working closely together with the sales manager, the personal assistant and the accounting assistant has given me an in-depth insight to the possibilities that I could pursue.”

Mary concludes: “I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship scheme to someone looking to get into property. The variety of apprenticeships are so vast and cover many different professions that you may not even know exist. Apprenticeships have given me an insight to the world of construction, and I am looking forward to continuing this ‘learning whilst working’ process.”