Jan 2020 / Blog

James Regan, 18, from Radyr always struggled with a “learning from a textbook” approach, but with Wales’ leading training provider, ACT, he found the perfect learning style to thrive.

Thanks to a hands-on Apprenticeship programme delivered through ACT, James is now excelling in a Technical Support role with Cardiff based computer services provider, QuickSmart IT. QuickSmart IT offer IT solutions and support to small and medium sized businesses across South Wales, the West Midlands and South West of England.

“After discovering what an apprenticeship was, I realised it was an ideal fit for me and my learning style. I don’t really get on with learning from a text book and would much rather learn through doing. Every thing I am learning on my apprenticeship is related to what I do on a day to day basis. I’m not just reading a text book learning stuff that is not going to be used 90% of the time.”

James’ journey to success began after he enrolled onto ACT’s Traineeship Level 1 IT programme. Traineeships are Pre-Apprenticeship training programmes that prepare 16-18 year olds for the world of work. Realising the traditional academic route wasn’t for him, James discovered that through an apprenticeship he could gain nationally recognised qualifications while learning on the job.

Despite having no knowledge of advanced IT, ACT were able to secure James a placement with QuickSmart IT, which soon led to the offer of an apprenticeship position with the IT solutions provider. Since then James has thrived, gaining invaluable experience on the apprenticeship, as well as a whole host of new skills.

“Before my apprenticeship, I had no knowledge of advanced IT, but now I get to work on a bit of everything from networking through to installs and servers. With QuickSmart IT, I have been picking up new things every day and my knowledge in IT has expanded incredibly since I’ve been here.”

Like thousands of other apprentices, James is massively benefiting from the chance to specialise and develop his skillset on the job, all while gaining qualifications and receiving tailored support.

”ACT have been brilliant and supported me every step of the way.  I found the one-to-one tutor sessions were a great help in getting me get though my Level 3 qualification. With the support of ACT, I have now completed both my Level 1 IT Users & Computers qualification and my Level 3 IT User Skills. QuickSmart IT have been great too. Any time I’ve felt stuck or needed support they’re more than happy to help.”

Reflecting on his future James added, Moving forwards I want to progress my skills and gain a much more in-depth knowledge of networking and servers to work my way up! I’m so glad I was pointed in the direction of ACT, who have been a huge help in getting me back on the right track. My advice to anyone thinking of training on the job is to ‘go for it 100%’. It’s the best way to learn.”

If you’re inspired by James’ story and think an Apprenticeship could be for you, then check out our Apprenticeship vacancies here. We have hundreds of vacancies available with top Welsh employers, who are looking for talented young candidates like you. What are you waiting for? Apply now.