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Our Apprentice Blogs: Meet Ethan

In his first blog, Ethan writes about experiences from his Business Officer Apprenticeship at Leeds East Academy:

I thought that when I left my high school in 2015, I wasn’t going to step foot in another high school for a very long time. However, after returning from 2 years volunteering in the USA, I have secured myself a business apprenticeship with one of the most exciting and ambitious 11-16 multi-academy trusts in the UK. My name is Ethan Harlow and I’m 21 years old. I work at Leeds East Academy, one of three schools that make up the White Rose Academies Trust.

"I thought that when I left my high school in 2015, I wasn't going to step foot in another high school for a very long time."

The White Rose Academies Trust has well and truly been “put on the map” in the education sector with rapid improvements in GCSE results in recent years - and you could absolutely tell. When I went for my interview the first thing I noticed was the vibrant atmosphere coupled with the smiling staff. I knew that all staff really loved what they did and were driven to succeed. I felt immediately welcome and wanted to be a part of it. The application process required me to fill out an application form and a cover letter before being invited for an interview with representatives from all three academies and the trust. My interview was successful, and I was swiftly offered a job with the trust central team.

The Trust team is small but holds the needs of the students in high regard and is always looking to praise and improve. I have been fortunate to work closely with Mr Andrew Whitaker (Executive Principal) and Mrs Yvonne Hare (Head of Communications and Projects) in the capacity of note taking in meetings, planning and organising meeting, and planning projects/events.

Most recently the White Rose Academies Trust had their annual Reflection event in July at the Hilton Doubletree in Leeds. I played a significant role organising this event completing several tasks that included: collecting charity raffle prizes; sourcing and purchasing decorations; inviting guests and collating their meal choices. I thoroughly enjoyed my time working with the trust team but as the summer holidays approached I found myself with and opportunity I couldn’t turn down.

Leeds East Academy, located in Seacroft, requested some summer help to complete finance and HR tasks in order to be ready for the 2018/19 academic year. My ultimate career goal is to become a chartered accountant and up until this point the most finance I had done was complete a purchase order for table confetti. This opportunity has now led me on to switching college courses to study AAT Level 2 Accounting at Leeds City College. I am excited and motivated to be pursuing my educational goals and fulfilling my working aspirations with Leeds East Academy.



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