When teenager Alex Winney decided a future in the classroom was not for him, he turned to apprenticeships and has now dived into a promising new career at Louth’s Meridian Leisure Centre.
Alex, 17, is currently five months into a year-long apprenticeship with the Magna Vitae Trust for Leisure and Culture in Lincolnshire.
As a result, he is earning while he learns and has embarked on his Lifeguarding qualifications as well as the course required to progress to a Level 2 gym instructor.
“I am much happier now, for me further education was not the way forward,” explained Alex.
Following school Alex did go to college in nearby Grimsby for a year, doing A-level studies in sport and geography and a B. Tech. in applied science. However, after completing year one he decided to make the change.
With his parents’ support, he got his CV together and started applying for jobs. Interviews with estate agencies and building companies followed, but Alex knew sport was his real interest and was delighted when his application for the position at Meridian was successful.
“My parents knew I wasn’t really that happy and so they were just pleased that I decided to do this for myself and was successful. It is now equipping me well for what I want to do in the future, giving me experience and confidence,” said Alex.
He hopes to have passed his Level 2 and Level 3 PT courses by the end of his year-long apprenticeship, providing him with the skills he needs to move on with his career.
“It is important that people know there are other options out there for young people if they are not happy in education,” he added.
The Director of Operations at Magna Vitae, Aeneas Richardson, was keen to promote his Trust’s support of apprenticeships.
“There are many routes into a career and for those like Alex, joining us in this way clearly provides a great start. Giving young people these opportunities is vital for spotting and encouraging talented people to join our organisation and hopefully progress with us,” he said.