Case Studies

Apprentice Name

April Upson

Apprenticeship Title

L2 Healthcare Science Assistant


West Sussex NHS Foundation Hospital Trust

Why did you decide to do an Apprenticeship?

I left school after doing my GCSEs as I had had enough of classroom study. I went straight into the workplace, studying an NVQ2 in racehorse Care management. Unfortunately I had to leave that job due to ill health and in 2007 I was encouraged by my local Job Centre to apply for the job of healthcare assistant at Worthing Hospital.

I got the job and then transferred to The Blood Sciences DEPT where I eventually became a Permanent Medical lab Assistant. i then applied for a job in the Cellular Pathology Dept but was unsuccessful as I did not have a science qualification. However my potential was recognised and I was offered the chance to be an Apprentice. I started my apprenticeship in 2017 and hope to complete in 18 months. I am now a permanent member of staff.

Please describe your experience

I get visited by my Apprentice tutor every month to go through work I have completed and to set new targets. All my work is kept in an e portfolio and I can see clearly where I am against targets set. I have already achieved my Maths and English at L1 and am now attempting level 2. It has been hard at times but I have had fantastic support from my manager and the team I work with.

How has your Apprenticeship helped you progress in your career?

I love the fact that my Apprenticeship is transferable to other hospital settings if I choose to move for whatever reason. My maths and english skills have improved and my day to day confidence in the workplace is now high.

Once I have completed my Apprenticeship I will be able to use the work in my e portfolio as evidence to complete a Lab Support Course set by the Institute for Bio medical Sciences (IBMS). I will then be able to apply for IBMS registration.

What do you feel are the advantages of doing an Apprenticeship over other training or education?

I feel that studying and working at the same time has helped me increase my knowledge and skills – given me more tools in my toolbox so to speak. I now feel that I have the confidence to progress further one day and maybe even consider a degree or a degree apprenticeship.

More apprentice case studies