Somerset College

Apprenticeship Profile: Carpentry and Joinery

Kye Heaslewood – Intermediate Apprentice in Carpentry and Joinery;
Kye began an Intermediate Apprenticeship in Carpentry and Joinery at Queen’s College in Taunton around six months ago and has not looked back since. As deputy to the School Carpenter, Kye continues to learn old crafts in addition to new methods so that he will be able to maintain the school’s historic buildings and keep the grounds to a high standard for future generations.

In his role in assisting the School Carpenter, Kye has been involved in a wide variety of projects including hanging doors, fitting locks, renewing valley boards, felt and battening and renewal of existing wall plates on the main old roof.

Apprenticeship benefits
Kye is much more of a practical learner and therefore found learning within the school classroom particularly challenging. In an attempt to counter this, Kye began to undertake a period of work experience at Queen’s College for a few hours a week whilst still at school. The opportunity to take on added responsibility and focus on practical work experience was a huge motivator for Kye and it soon became clear that he had some real potential.

As the difficulties at school began to worsen, it became evident that Kye was on a downward slope. This prompted him to make the decision to pursue a more practical solution after he left school. As he had already impressed the staff and managers at Queens College during his period of work experience, the school were keen to offer Kye an apprenticeship opportunity within the Maintenance Team.

Kye jumped at the chance and has continued to develop in both his private life and work capacity ever since. Undertaking an apprenticeship has been a fantastic learning curve for Kye and his attitude to life has changed for the better. He now understands the importance of learning to gain as much knowledge as possible and he would like to continue his studies after he has completed his apprenticeship to gain more qualifications.

Business productivity and success
As an employer, Queen’s College are keen to utilise apprenticeship programmes to develop young talent within their workforce. The School Carpenter is due to retire in five years’ time and this represented the ideal opportunity to train Kye as his successor with the aim to eventually take over his role.

Queen’s College has many historic buildings, with stunning architecture. A business objective for the school is therefore to be able to maintain its buildings to a high standard, and appointing Kye as an apprentice has proved to be instrumental in achieving this. With the help of an experienced and supportive carpenter as his mentor, Kye is learning to be sympathetic to the way in which Queen’s College was originally built.

Positive outcomes
Kye openly admits he struggled through his school life, however undertaking the apprenticeship programme has provided him with just the focus that he needed.

This was also reflected by Steve Jones, Estates and Facilities Manager from Queen’s College who explains “Kye has exceeded all our expectations by being a keen learner and wanting to be able to master the skills required to become an excellent carpenter. During these first six months of his apprenticeship he has matured and achieved so much. He is also very proud of himself which in our opinion, he has every right to be”.

To find out more about Apprenticeship programmes or to apply then please click here