A picture of Jordan's story

Jordan Leaman – Business and administration apprentice

Business and administration apprentice Jordan says his apprenticeship with Sanctuary Group has boosted his confidence and opened the door to new opportunities. Here, he shares the story of his academic journey to date:

It was towards the end of 2018 when I decided it was time to look for an apprenticeship, after having difficulty looking for jobs relevant to my skillset. I had started studying at Heart of Worcestershire College in 2013 and finally felt that I got as far as I could and achieved the qualifications that I wanted in 2018.

It was a difficult journey for me. Having not achieved the maths and English grades I hoped for in high school, this made me think there wouldn’t be a bright future ahead.

During my second last year of high school I was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome. Making friends and settling into the new challenging environment of college at the time proved difficult; for me the difficulty of it all is the anxiety and confidence problems brought on by having a social disability and difficulty with learning. But ultimately, this defined me and helped make me the person I am today of my own accord.

During my time at college I managed to achieve a C in IGCSE English and Level 2 Diploma in ITQ (Information Technology Qualification) City and Guilds. But I became worried that because I hadn’t managed to achieve Level 2 functional skills maths qualification, it would set me back.

Something I like to remind myself is to always strive to achieve the best results, to the best of my ability, a trait that I look to apply in all my endeavours.

In my first year of college I was elected as the course representative for the IT course I was on at the time and in 2017 I achieved a Further Education Award at Heart of Worcestershire College.

My favourite subject has always been IT, everyday I try to teach myself new techniques and skills that I can pick up and apply to my work life.

Having thought about university, I questioned if I would manage to cope with the workload and if it would send me into financial difficulties. I decided that an apprenticeship was the best possible route.

Between August and December 2018 was a rocky point for me, having lost my maternal grandparents. I was very close to my grandparents; they would always encourage me to have high aspirations and to not give up.

Nevertheless, I kept going and persevered with my aspirations and applied for an apprenticeship through Worcester Group Training Association - a vacancy in the Energy Team at Sanctuary Group. This was also my first interview for a paid job.

When I had the call to say I had got the job it came at the best and worst possible time, during the funeral wake for my grandfather. In my mind this wasn’t a bad time at all as each member of my family was there, even the long-distance members and - in my mind – my grandparents would be there too. The news prompted celebration around the room and gave me the motivation for the future ahead.

My role at Sanctuary sees me working as part of the Energy Team, which is responsible for processing the energy and water bills for all Sanctuary properties and office sites across the country. The team is very flexible and supportive and settling in I’ve found that everyone always has a smile and is ready to talk. I enjoy the flexibility and opportunities my role offers and say yes to every opportunity and challenge it presents – I’m always keen to make an effort and give everything a go.

I like to think that my academic journey has been the story of someone who started out shy, reserved and not sure where he was going to becoming someone confident, keen and sure of where he would like his future to go.

Finally, I would like to say that with strong commitment and dedication to succeed, success is down to our own development and willpower to persevere and to keep going with our aspirations. As they say, we are the architects of our own futures.