Modern Apprenticeships are an exciting way of gaining skills and qualifications, enabling people to work, learn and earn at the same time. Recognising this unique opportunity eighteen year-old Rebecca Simpson sought to gain a Modern Apprenticeship within science; a field that she had enjoyed studying at school.

Speaking to Rebecca she said, “I’d done some work experience with Thermo Fisher Scientific when I was in 4th year at school and again in the Easter before I left. It was from keeping in touch with some of the staff that I heard about the Modern Apprenticeship vacancy.

‘At that time I didn’t know much about MA’s but once learning that I could gain a qualification as well as hands-on work experience I thought it seemed like the perfect opportunity for me.”

As the world leader in serving science, whose ethos is to empower their people to advance innovative technologies, develop meaningful solutions, and build rewarding careers, Rebecca has no doubt of the bright future she has ahead.

Rebecca continues, “Doing four days a week at work and 1 day in college working towards my HNC in Applied Science is the perfect blend. The topics that I learn in college really help me with the work that I do at Thermo Fisher and getting the hands-on experience at work gives me a better understanding of my college work. They go hand-in-hand. I’m essentially applying what I’ve learned to my work and doing it all in real time.”

Comparing her experience to those of her friends at University, Rebecca is confident of her choice. “The reason that I ruled out University was the fact that so many of my friends went to University and then realised they were in the wrong course or that they didn’t enjoy it and I didn’t want to be in the same position.

For me Modern Apprenticeships are definitely the way forward.

'I’m in a great position, where I have my foot in the door with a world leading company, I’m educated on their company and products, making a name for myself all whilst gaining the qualifications that I need to progress in this field. Not many people can say they are doing that.”

Aware of the stigma attached to Modern Apprenticeships that they are predominately for men, especially within the Science field, Rebecca is keen to encourage females to follow in her footsteps.

“MA’s are for male and females and with so many MA’s available in a range of subjects I think it’s important for more females to get involved. The science field is bit like that to, especially within manufacturing, but working within the environment I want to encourage more girls to get involved. From experience you aren’t treated any different and if anything you listened to that little bit more. It’s certainly hasn’t put me off and only makes me more determined to succeed.”

Making her mark on the industry, Rebecca is keen to develop her career with Thermo Fisher Scientific. Rebecca said, “They are a fantastic company to work for and are always trying to better their employees. Right now I’m at the early stages of my career, working in manufacturing but the ultimate goals is to get into the virology department which I need my HCN for. I’m excited to see what the future holds and have no doubt I’m in the best position possible to take my career to the next level.”