Apprenticeships for All: Business apprentice, Hayden, proves autism is not a barrier to success

Hayden is an aspiring Computing Engineer, who recently made a lasting impression during his internship, which successfully secured him a Business Administration Apprenticeship.

19-year-old Hayden, from Newton-Le-Willows, first started his journey at our St Helens College campus on a Creative Media course before progressing onto the Supported Internship Programme, a programme delivered in partnership with St Helens Council, which supports young people, aged 16-18 with an Educational Healthcare Plan to gain valuable work experience to increase their chances of securing a job.

During his internship, Hayden, completed a six-month placement with the Colleges’ Apprenticeship Team, spending four days a week at the STEM Centre campus, providing essential administrative support to the team.

As a young adult with autism, Hayden was eager to pave his own path, ready to take on new challenges and opportunities. Once he completed his internship, Hayden was ready for employment and applied for the apprenticeship vacancy and was later successful at interview.

Within his apprenticeship role, Hayden is responsible for processing certificates, pursuing signatures, validating data, and assembling necessary evidence for apprenticeship packs, ensuring quality and efficiency is met in all his work.

Sharing his thoughts on his apprenticeship journey so far, Hayden said:

The routine and challenging tasks keep me engaged and I have great support within the team.

Having been interested by computers and tech since a young age, I’m happy I get to apply those skills in my daily role.

Hayden’s Manager, Sarah, expressed her admiration for Hayden’s progress from the start of his internship to his apprenticeship, highlighting his invaluable contribution to the team.

She said:

Hayden’s computer skills are a massive asset for the team. With his skills, he can complete tasks quickly and effectively, allowing him time to develop even more skills and knowledge within his role.

Proud Mum, Emma, said:

I can’t thank the Apprenticeship Team enough. The change we have seen in Hayden since starting his apprenticeship in September to now has been fantastic. He walks a little bit taller, talks with his head held high and is learning to overcome any obstacles that come his way.

It may be nothing to some, but for us and Hayden, it has given him a sense of belonging. Sarah and her team understand Hayden for who he is and what he can achieve. We just want to say thank you for allowing Hayden to be Hayden.

Hayden’s performance during his apprenticeship serves as proof that autism doesn’t define him; instead, it adds a unique perspective to his work.

Both Hayden and his mum, Emma, hope that Hayden can convey a positive message and inspire other young people and adults, proving ‘Apprenticeships for All’ is more than just a theme, and that with a little bit of courage and support anything is achievable.

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