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1. So how did you end up working in your current role in IT?
Before working in IT support I had actually started a degree in Psychology, but felt that it wasn’t for me. So I decided to start afresh: find a job to gain experience and learn new skills while I tried to discover my passion, which still felt uncertain to me. It was actually staring me right in the face. Throughout my pre-teen and teenage years I had been building my own PC, always keeping up-to-date with tech news, always being curious about how technology worked, and always trying to troubleshoot PC problems by myself; IT is my passion.
IT Support deals with common issues and problems in most working environments. I feel that it builds a great foundation for any IT career, and is my first step into a lengthy career in IT.
2. What is your favourite aspect of the role? What do you enjoy most about your day-to-day?
My favourite part of working in IT Support is working with like-minded people, particularly IT staff; gaining knowledge from their experiences, decisions, and how they handle situations.
My other favourite aspect of the role is feeling a sense of fulfilment every time I see my own solutions and fixes working. I feel even more fulfilled if I have had to go through a lot of trial and error to solve an issue.
3. What are you hoping to do after you finish your qualification, and how is your apprenticeship helping you to get there?
Ultimately, I would like to get into penetration testing; however, I understand that this takes a lot of experience and knowledge. So, when I finish my apprenticeship I would like to stay in the IT field, and most likely stay in IT Support, for around 2 years until I get the relevant experience, knowledge, and certification to work as a [Junior/Associate] Infrastructure Security Engineer. I would also be working towards getting the relevant knowledge and experience to work on cloud-based infrastructure projects. While working in infrastructure, I would be working towards IT security based certifications.
The IT staff in my workplace have been very helpful, and one of the infrastructure engineers acts as my mentor. He takes time out of his own working hours to teach me about infrastructure, scripting, and introduce me to the security aspects of IT that I did not have much knowledge on before — infrastructure security particularly, which he specialises on.
4. Anything else you’d like to add?
I have gained great skills and knowledge in IT services during the 10 months that I have been with Tandem. I feel that this is because of the support system that I have in both Tandem and WhiteHat. I would also like to add that I was very close to signing up for a recruitment apprenticeship role; however, Mel, the recruitment officer that I was talking to on the WhiteHat kick-off day, saw my passion for technology and IT, and after asking about my hobbies and interests she pushed me to go for an IT apprenticeship. On top of that, she felt that my personality would fit with the Tandem values, and that I would love Tandem, so she recommended that I put myself forwards; she was right. She also helped me with making sure that I was ready for my first interview with Tandem by doing a practice phone interview, and gave me valuable feedback that would later help me pass my first apprenticeship interview, and get the job. WhiteHat supported and helped me immensely, even when I had not even landed an apprenticeship yet.