Rhianon Mone, IBM Degree Apprentice

Posted: 26th of September 2019 by Beth

Tell us a little bit about you?

My name is Rhianon Mone, I am 21 and from Hampshire. After finishing college, I had my mind set on going into Musical Theatre, which lead me to doing a year’s training at the Guildford School of Acting. I then realised that I wanted a more stable career which lead me to a year of working at BNP Paribas. Whilst working, I discovered that I wanted to develop my knowledge further in the business world in terms of gaining a degree, as well as working and earning money – this led me to this degree apprenticeship.

What are you studying?

BA (Hons) Business Management

Where are you working?

I work for IBM as a Junior Service Manager in the Public Sector.

Why did you choose a Degree Apprenticeship?

Having experienced working full-time and obtaining a steady income, I didn’t want to miss out on the independency that I had found. At the same time, I was aware that if I wanted to progress in a career then it would be most beneficial to get a qualification as this opens multiple doors. In addition, the experience gained during a degree apprenticeship is invaluable and sets you aside from other graduates who haven’t been able to put their learning into practice.

What have you enjoyed most about your course?

I have enjoyed the Introduction to Research module most as it gave me the freedom to research into anything that I found interesting within the workplace. It let my more creative side take a lead while I conducted interviews, surveys and online research.

What have you learnt so far, during your work placement?

During my work placement at IBM, I have learnt a lot about how Service Management works, and I am starting to become more familiar with various technical aspects. Within my role I have taken on some project management tasks which I have really enjoyed, and I plan to gain my Prince2 qualification in the coming years.

In addition to this, I have taken part in various ‘giveback’ opportunities, representing the Business Management Degree Apprenticeship and various open evening and careers events with IBM. I have really enjoyed talking to prospective students/ apprentices and opening their eyes to what Pearson/IBM have to offer.

How has your placement helped you with your studies?

My placement has helped me put the teachings into practice day-to-day. When I learn something at university, I can the implement it in the workplace which will embed what I have studied.

Due to not having much spare time to carry out university work, I have learned how to prioritise and organise my time better. This will benefit me in the future as it is a valuable skill that will be used for the rest of my career. Additionally, I have a really supportive team that have a wide range of expertise. If I am unsure about something that I have learned, someone is likely to be able to help develop my understanding and show me real-life examples.

Do you have any advice for anyone applying for a degree apprenticeship?

Just go for it! For IBM, there are a few different online tests and interviews to go through but do your best and give honest answers. Don’t pretend to be someone you’re not as recruiters can see through that. Also, embrace the application process as a learning experience – trying out various tests which you may come across in the future and meeting various people who can help aid your career/ education.

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