In July 2014, David started working as a team member at the Odyssey Bowl whilst completing his degree in International Politics and Conflict Studies. He graduated two years later and is now in a Supervisory role at the entertainment complex. He completed an Apprenticeship with Springvale and explains the benefits to his career as a result.
Tell us about why you joined the ApprenticehsipsNI programme?
I decided to join the course after chatting to my colleague who had completed an apprenticeship with Springvale. He explained the level 3 qualification to me as I was particularly interested in learning new leadership styes.
How did you find the training?
I found the training gave me perspective of specific elements within my role and made me more aware of how people look to their supervisor for direction. The Springvale Tutor, Claire McDowell, would observe me completing daily tasks such as updating the kitchen staff on bookings for the day and communicating with staff members to ensure adherence to procedures.
I really enjoyed the course and felt a great sense of achievement when I finished. I now feel more confident in my role and dealing with tricky situations. I feel it made me better at my job.
Can you explain the benefits to your career since you completed the training?
Two years ago, I never thought that I would be in the position I am today. Completing the training helped me to evaluate my career prospects and where I see myself in 5 years’ time. I would like to progress further into a management role and having achieved this qualification has gave me a sense of ambition and confidence to progress.
In 2017, Claire nominated me as 'Apprentice of the Year' at The Janus Awards. The application was successful, and I was interviewed at Stormont Hotel. For the interview, I prepared a two-minute presentation outlining why I joined the apprenticeship programme, my role as an apprentice and key achievements in my work. I was delighted to have been successfully shortlisted as a finalist amongst 4 others. I was over the moon to have even got as far as the interview! I never once expected to have became a finalist and am extremely proud.
In June 2017, I was nominated for and won the apprentice learner of the year at the annual Springvale Graduation event. This came as another surprise to me!
Would you recommend the apprenticeships training to others?
There are currently others completing the apprenticeship programme here at the Odyssey Bowl. Before they started, I was able to explain the benefits of the course from my own experience.
As a supervisor, I can see the benefits of employees completing the programme. The staff are gaining more knowledge on the job and are more confident in themselves and their fit within the business.
I would recommend the training to other employers within industry. It's a great way to invest in staff and help to boost their skills.
I would also definitely recommend working with Springvale. Our tutor Claire’s enthusiasm and drive helped to motivate staff who have completed Apprenticeship training.
Have you had any career highlights at The Odyssey Bowl?
One of my key achievements and highlights at The Odyssey Bowl was improving services for customers. We listened to our customers and came up with the ‘Autism Bowling Sessions’ which run from Monday to Sunday. These sessions are tailored specifically for families and individuals with autism and promote an autism friendly environment to suit the needs of our customers.
March 2nd, 2018