Learning as you earn is the perfect solution for Tom, 18, and he’s keen to recruit many of his friends who are in a similar situation.
“A HIT assessor came into my school and told me about apprenticeships. I knew instantly that was the way forward for me,” said Tom. “HIT is an amazing company. I recommend it to all my friends because they are like me and can’t really learn in a classroom.
“This is the perfect job for me. Hospitality is the industry I want to be in and I’m working and learning about it at the same time. It’s the full package.”
HIT first helped Tom get a job at a café in Birmingham city centre but it ran into financial difficulty and closed after he had worked there for about a year.
HIT however was there to offer him another lifeline. He sailed through the interview and landed a job as catering assistant at Corporate Catering Solutions in Birmingham.
Tom and the team at Corporate Catering Solutions prepare and serve hot meals and snacks for hundreds of office workers at their Holiday Street base, and also offer an outside catering service.
Tom has already earned his Customer Services (level 2) NVQ and is now working towards his Food and Beverage Apprenticeship (Level 2) with the guidance and support of training assessor Kerry Cuffe.
“Kerry is a massive help. She comes to see me every three weeks and we sit down and go through my work. If I get stuck, I can call her any time. She’s one of a kind,” he adds.
Kerry said: “Tom is doing so well and is being given new responsibilities. The company is taking on more apprentices and Tom will be a mentor, helping them learn the job.”