An employee of Barclays Bank, Heathfield, who graduated from the town’s groundbreaking employment scheme, met her MP last week.
Jade Simpson completed a one-year apprenticeship scheme with Barclays and is now a permanent member of staff. She was delighted to meet Greg Barker MP, who visited the bank to discuss the benefits of apprenticeships with local managers.
Jade went to college locally and hoped to become a personal trainer but was put off by the cost of the training.
She found herself out of work and struggling to find a job but was supported by the Heathfield Works! employment programme for 16-19 year olds run by employability charity Tomorrow’s People. The charity highlighted that Barclays was offering apprenticeships and helped Jade to prepare for her interview.
Jade said: “I felt the interview went quite well but I couldn’t believe it when I was offered a job at a bank, specially Barclays. Everyone has been lovely here and I immediately felt I was part of a team. My family have been very supportive and it’s great that I have successfully finished the apprenticeship. I feel very positive about my job here and I’ve got ambitions to move into a management role.”
Branch manager Jon Davies said: “It’s been fantastic having Jade as a member of the team. It’s really gratifying to see how she has grown and developed in the role, she has a great personality and it’s a pleasure to see how she deals with customers. We are keen to recruit more apprentices and encourage young people between the ages of 16 to 24 to visit our website to see the opportunities available.”
Jade is one of 1,000 apprentices taken on by Barclays which launched its apprentice programme last April. Greg Barker said: “I was delighted to meet Jade last week to hear how the apprenticeship scheme has been the start of a rewarding career for her.”