At The Prince’s Trust, we’ve been piloting innovative online programmes, which we’re expanding in light of the Covid-19 outbreak, so that we can continue to build young people’s skills and confidence from home.
Get Into: Business Technology is an ongoing pilot programme that began running in Leeds in September 2019. Alongside in-person team building sessions, Google provided The Prince’s Trust with a 12-week online IT Support certificate. This self-guided learning was designed to train the young people on the programme in the basics of IT Support.
Francis Edwards, 23 and from Leeds, found himself unsure what he wanted to do and where he should start to look for work after graduating from university.
“My main challenge was fairly common - deciding exactly what I want to do. Nobody prepares you for suddenly finishing education and having to make your own way. I was getting quite frustrated and impatient to be honest.”
Francis realised he was interested in jobs in IT and technology and found The Prince’s Trust Get Into: Business Technology programme, embarking on the 12-week online ‘Learn with Google’ IT Support Certificate.
“I found the course challenging in a good way. I like how it is structured in a way that is easy to understand. The tutorial videos talk about very technical things; but explain them very simply. You don’t have to be an expert to understand them.”
The hard work Francis put towards his IT Support Certificate paid off, and he was offered a fifteen-month paid Client Support Apprenticeship at the University of Leeds’s IT Department.
“I now volunteer for Leeds NHS with the CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) Volunteer Programme. As part of that group, I work to ensure patients are fully engaged and then feedback on proposed changes to the NHS services. I am also now volunteering for The Prince’s Trust’s programmes and I advise on their Youth Forum.”