On 15 March, RICS Recruit was joined by Sammy Kingston for a live Twitter Q&A. As the Co-Founder of The Apprentice Network and a current surveying apprentice, Sammy offered his advice about apprenticeships.
You can read a full transcript of the Q&A below:
How do I find an apprenticeship?
The best way to find apprenticeships is through the government provider online.
Do you regret not taking A-Levels?
I don't regret it. I am a better practical learner and the apprenticeship allows me to learn in a practical way.
I'm currently in my last year of sixth form and want to become a quantity surveyor. Would you advise university or not?
I think the best thing to do is weigh up the pros and cons of university and an apprenticeship, and see which path best suits your skills. Everyone is different.
What's the difference between a 'Surveying Technician' and 'Chartered Surveyor'
The best place to find out is on the RICS Website.
What has been the highlight of your apprenticeship so far?
I would have to say setting up The Apprentice Network and winning an award for it! It is still surreal to this day. Having the opportunity to work at CBRE is a highlight too. I feel so lucky walking into the office every day!
Is it difficult balancing college/university work with your work at your job?
It's not difficult if you plan accordingly. My advice is to ensure you don’t leave studying to the last minute and complete college or university work in plenty of time.
Why do you think some schools discourage apprenticeships? And how do you think schools can be made more aware of the value of apprenticeships?
It's the duty of apprentices to spread the word and do presentations at schools to ensure people know about it. Apprenticeships are no new thing anymore and schools should encourage their students to do what fits them best. A-Levels and going to university has been “the done thing” for years, but as times change, schools need to change too. Many people still go to university and I am not discouraging that, but apprenticeships should be looked at equally.
Why is it important for apprentices to network with each other?
Networking is one of the most important things in business, not just property. Most people will know the phrase “it’s not about what you know, it’s about who you know”. I do believe you need to know something, but building a network of people in your company and externally is so important and will lead to future work and future deals.
Visit The Apprentice Network for networking opportunities for apprentices.
How are apprentices viewed in the property industry?
Since the day I started, the view of apprentices has always been really positive. When I joined, not many people knew what an apprentice was in property. Unlike other professions, apprentices were new. However, now that Apprenticeships have been going for more than three years, apprentices are viewed just like any other employee of a company. At first I was scared how I would be viewed by people I work with and without, but it has never been a problem and everyone is very supportive.