Diljeet is the perfect example of just how profitable an apprenticeship can be when you apply determination, grit and adaptability. Finding herself initially occupied with an interest in sports science from a young age, her passion first led her to study physiotherapy at college.
And as with so many of our apprentice stories, the path Diljeet found herself on pointed overwhelmingly towards university. But despite this, Diljeet decided she wasn’t ready to close her options, and thanks to that, she crossed paths with JTL’s building services engineering apprenticeship.
“The idea of combining physical and technical work seemed like a dream come true. Being able to get hands-on experience, develop my problem-solving skills, and gain an income whilst knowing I would be having a direct, positive impact on patient care and their quality of life was unbeatable.”
With engineering, the physical kind of work that Diljeet had always been drawn to could be a fundamental part of her future career. With the added value of gaining qualifications, avoiding university fees and conversely earning straight away, Diljeet’s mind was made up.
Diljeet hit the ground running from the moment she began her apprenticeship, quickly moving through the ranks to secure a Band 5 NHS role in just over a year. But Diljeet had one unexpected thing in her path – a global pandemic.
“It was tricky to navigate my time as a learner during Covid-19. If I’m honest, it was a daunting experience at the start. To begin a new job under normal circumstances is nerve-wracking. But to start a new career through your laptop screen? Now that was a challenge filled with hurdles.”
Another surprise for Diljeet was her peers, though she had anticipated it to be a male-dominated field, she hadn’t considered the potential age disparity as well. Yet, with an open mind, she quickly made close friends with people from ages 17 through to 60. After handling both the challenges of a new team and remote working, there was just one more thing in store for her.
“Getting settled didn’t take as long as I thought it might have done. However, a new curve ball was thrown in my direction when our team leader left on long-term sick leave.
“With a considerable gap in the team processes, I was thrown into the deep end and given the position of fulfilling our team leader’s daily tasks, including allocating people’s roles.
“At first, it was overwhelming to keep on top of the mound of paperwork and understand new processes and further responsibilities. With this said, I came out the other end with leadership skills, managerial skills and incredible gratitude for the experience.”
Diljeet’s story is one of incrementing challenges, but it’s also one of incrementing rewards. After stepping up and fulfilling the team leader role, she’s completed her first year of a degree apprenticeship in healthcare science and has subsequently been shortlisted for a Band 6 post, in which she will become a registered clinical technologist.
Diljeet now looks to share her experience as an inspiration for future apprentices, showing that no matter the challenges they may face, with the drive to succeed, no obstacle remains insurmountable. The real takeaway of Diljeet’s apprentice story though is that there is no deep secret to a successful apprenticeship, it all came down to the positive attitude she brought with her every day of her journey.
To learn more about our building services engineering apprenticeship, please visit https://jtltraining.com/apprenticeships/courses/building-services-engineering-craftsperson-apprenticeship/