Chris currently works in the specialist haemostasis laboratory as a trainee biomedical scientist.
He started in specialist haemostasis for his first lab technician level 3 apprenticeship, secured a banded role in the department and has now progressed onto the level 6 healthcare science practitioner apprenticeship.
When asked why he chose to do an apprenticeship and what appealed to him about them, he said after spending 2 years at sixth form, he found that education in a purely school/college setting wasn’t for him; he preferred to learn with real life hands on experiences whilst also being paid to be there, rather than having to pay for the privilege at University. He therefore decided an apprenticeship was the best way to access this type of learning and took on and completed his Level 3 Laboratory Technician apprenticeship before progressing onto his Level 6 Degree programme.
What does a typical day look like in your role?
My days vary based on the workload but the majority of my days involve:
- Completing daily maintenance of our analysers in the morning (cleaning and ensuring analyser is in working condition)
- Specialist Testing of control and patient blood samples for patients with suspected bleeding or clotting disorders, such as haemophilia throughout the day using the analysers
- Centrifuging and Separating Patient plasma using a pipette
- Booking in and receiving specialist testing blood samples
What do you enjoy about your role?
Chris says that he enjoys that no two days are the same, the workflow can be very dynamic so he isn’t constantly doing the same thing. He also likes knowing that what he does is contributing towards the care of a patient and that he is able to contribute towards studies to further his knowledge and understanding of biomedical science.
What sorts of things do you do for the 20% off the job learning aspect of your apprenticeship?
Chris attends lectures and seminars at university, completes assignments and assessments and has additional learning on the job such as being shown a new test that is completed in the laboratory. He is also completing work towards his IBMS (Institute of Biomedical Scientists) registration portfolio which allows him to become a qualified Biomedical Scientist.
What are your future intentions?
Once Chris finishes his apprenticeship degree, he will become an HCPC registered Biomedical Scientist and will continue to work in the same field but because he is fully qualified, he will be completing more specialised testing and delivering patient’s results.
What advice would you give to others who may be looking to take on an apprenticeship?
If you found engaging with your work at school boring/hard it might not be that you aren’t smart enough to do it, it might be that you haven’t found the best way for you to learn and an apprenticeship is a great alternative. Don’t be afraid of doing something a bit different, I am in the same position as most of my friends that finished college and went straight to University without the debt and the benefit of being paid the whole time as well.