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From chemistry to childcare – finding the right path

Sometimes your perfect career path isn’t one you expected to follow. Although Alex Williams had experience working with children, they didn’t consider following this career until they had dropped out of university. They had felt pressure from school that university was the route they should go down, even though their passion laid

I felt pressure to go to University

Whilst I was completing my GCSE’s and A-Levels, I was working in a primary school afterschool club. That was with ages from reception to year 6 – so a big mix and match of ages. I really enjoyed that, but I didn’t actually think about following childcare as career path. Instead, I went to university and did chemistry. I did 3 years of that, bit then dropped out. I feel that I was very much pressured in school to go into chemical engineering.


Re-thinking my career

After I dropped out, I re-thought my career. I looked back on what I had done and realised that the thing I had really enjoyed had been working with children. So, I signed up with a teaching agency and became teaching assistant. I did that on and off for few years. It involved a lot of travel and wasn’t necessarily reliable money.


Apprenticeships suit me

After the pandemic, I came to Si Lwli. I started my apprenticeship a month in to my role. When I got offered the job, I had just finished off my degree with Open University. I haven’t stopped some form of education since I was 18. I haven’t got to the hands on bit of my apprenticeship yet as I am still doing a lot of independent learning online. This has suited me well though as I already have a lot of the skills todo this from my degree. I’m used to having the mentality to sit down and get some work done.


Great support from Educ8

I have been supported well by Educ8. At every meeting we go through my wellbeing and see how I am handling the workload. I had a hard few months and I was able to communicate this with my trainer coach. They were happy for me to just do what I could. This took a big weight off me which in turn made me more capable.


Flexibility to learn in Welsh and English

I’m a Welsh speaker and I will be studying parts of my qualification in Welsh. I don’t think my brain would manage all the theory parts in Welsh, but when I get into the practical parts it will become much more important as all of our day to day communication is in Welsh. I’ve had the flexibility to do what parts I want in Welsh or English.


You can study any of our childcare qualifications in Welsh – find out more.

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