Three apprentices have successfully secured full-time jobs with Northumberland County Council.
Brodie McHugh, 22, and Shannon Parker, 21, from Blyth, and Sophie Greenley, 21, of Embleton, all joined Homes for Northumberland, the former arm's-length organisation which manages the council’s housing stock, five years ago.
Now, all three have secured full-time positions across the council - Brodie is a project support officer and Sophie and Shannon are housing assistants. Sophie has completed three separate apprenticeships, in customer service, business administration and housing, while Brodie completed one in business and administration, and Shannon completed one in housing.
The council is celebrating its commitment to taking on apprentices as part of National Apprenticeship Week, which runs until Friday. Over the last five years, the council has taken on more than 1,000 apprentices, with the NHS in Northumberland taking on 65 and schools in the county taking on 295.
Brodie's skills and commitment to her work meant she was highly commended at the Direct Works Forum Repairs and Maintenance awards in 2015, in the non-construction trade apprentice category. She said: "The skills I have developed over the course of my apprenticeship allow me to look at problem solving in a more creative way. This is essential in my current role, and I may not have got these skills without this apprenticeship."
Sophie added: "The apprenticeship has really helped me to improve. The things that I learned, from working in a variety of roles during my apprenticeship, gave me confidence in my ability and were invaluable in securing my current role with the Alnwick housing team."
Coun Scott Dickinson, business chairman of Northumberland County Council, said: "Apprenticeships are incredibly valuable to the council and to businesses in Northumberland. We support hundreds of apprentices each year at the council and they play a huge role in the work that we do."
Coun Allan Hepple, cabinet member for housing, added: "These apprenticeships are great for the whole council, and especially for the housing department. All three are a great asset to the teams they are working in."