We thought we would mark Apprenticeship week by involving our very own Systems Administration apprentice, Victoria Wallace, who has been completing her apprenticeship with Datactics alongside studying at Belfast Met.
In this blog, Victoria chats about her experience in technology so far, her apprenticeship, the skills she has been acquiring, and of course, her experience working at Datactics.
Hi Victoria, what stage are you now at with your apprenticeship?
I have been in Datactics now for 15 months! I am now at the stage with my Belfast Met Course in Networking and Infrastructure that I have finished all OCR (Oxford, Cambridge, and RSA Examinations) class units, but I still have some NVQ work to complete. Prior to starting the apprenticeship, I was always extremely interested in Technology. Back when I was at school, I did not have a specific interest in IT at all, but the apprenticeship has allowed me to gain the equivalent of 2 A-Levels and provided me with the theoretical basis to then put into practice in my day-to-day role.
What has the Belfast Met course taught you?
The course took me through the very basics of networking initially and quite quickly within my role at Datactics I became heavily involved in user support, which is a critical requirement, particularly in an ever-growing business. From the get-go, I have been able to take the lead on several projects and as I have grown into my role, I am now able to use my knowledge gained on the course to react quickly to problems and help to solve connection issues. Datactics have really helped me take this theory and put it into practice which enabled me to progress further and opened up more opportunities for additional accreditation during the course too.
What excites you about a career in IT moving forward?
For me, it is the level of opportunities that are available. I am keen to continue to build my career in the tech world and I am looking into security exams that I could potentially take to help me progress my career. My degree background was in Counselling, and I was also working in a call centre, but the pandemic really encouraged me to change my career direction as by then I knew I wanted to pursue a career in Technology. I saw the opportunity come up, applied and it was definitely the right move for me.
What would you say to anybody considering undertaking an apprenticeship?
I would say to research into the different options available. Belfast Met has an incredible range of apprenticeships on offer (some of which I had never heard of prior to joining Datactics!). Whatever age or stage you are at it’s never too late to consider changing your career direction. Prior to undertaking the apprenticeship, I had zero experience in the tech world. The role at Datactics compared with the course challenged me from the beginning and without the support of my amazing team, I wouldn’t have been able to do it!
How has being a part of the Datactics team been?
Hugely supportive! The level of experience within the team is inspiring. There are also a great number of learning opportunities on offer to you. I am looking forward to getting involved with speaking at a local Tech event in the next few months (something I never thought I would do!). I have been able to learn first-hand how to work in a crisis, manage difficult requests, and problem solve and Datactics has been a great place to learn. I am excited to see where my career goes next!
Happy National Apprenticeship Week! Thanks, Victoria for chatting with us. You are a real asset to the team.