Leicester College Blog

Level 5 Operations Manager Apprentice – Going back to college after 30 years


After hearing so many great things about this Apprentice, I wanted to sit down with her and understand how she has made the most out of her apprenticeship.

Lainy is currently completing the Level 5 Operations Manager Apprenticeship alongside her job as an Admin Manager within the NHS. After securing this role in 2013, when the apprenticeships were being discussed she was keen to get signed up.

What was the reason you wanted to do the Apprenticeship?

I wanted to do the Apprenticeship because even though I had managed a team for over 5 years, I felt that the skills that I would learn would benefit not just myself but the wider team. I was invited to join an information session with the college so I could understand what I was signing myself up to and exactly what I would be learning.

How has the Apprenticeship helped you and your team ?

Since starting the Apprenticeship, I have learnt so much about managing a team! My job is very people oriented and revolves around the staff so ensuring they work together is key. I have seen a really big difference in my team, they are now really great at listening and accepting colleagues’ opinions as well as speaking to each other to resolve problems.

The apprenticeship has boosted my confidence massively. Even though I was managing a team before, I now feel like I am more confident in the different skills needed to support my staff.

Did you find that your employer and the college supported you with your Apprenticeship?

Yes 100%. My employer has allowed me to have the time off each month to come into college as well as compete the off the job training. It was hard to balance it at the start but after time it became second nature to manage, and it kept me feeling really motivated in my role.

My lecturer James and Assessor Mary have been amazing throughout the process. They have always given me feedback on my work and are always happy to answer all my questions. Their support made me feel even more motivated which was brilliant!

How did you find it going back into a learning environment?

Well, after not being in education for around 30 years, It was daunting to start with. I had nerves like it was my first day at school however, as soon as I started it was easy to get back into. It was quite nice to be in a different environment. I felt confident doing the assignments as I made lots of notes during the classes and I knew James and Mary were always available if I needed them.

After hearing such positive things from Lainy, I caught up with James and Mary …

“I would like to say that Lainy has continued to work on her course right through the pandemic while continuing in her job role at the NHS. At the start of the course Lainy had not completed any studying at this level for a number of years and it was all new to her – from coming into college  to writing assignments and then online learning. It is through her constant endeavours to success that she has managed to progress where others have not.”

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