Two school leavers from the South West have been chosen from over five hundred applicants to join a new insurance apprenticeship programme and will be starting their career with Dorset's only independent Chartered Insurance Broker Alan & Thomas.
Lizzey Cull from Poole in Dorset (front row above far left) and Daisy Jackson from Brewham in Somerset (front row far right) have both joined the Brokerbility Academy Apprenticeship Scheme. The 12-15 month scheme is a brand new nationwide programme designed to offer school leavers a genuine alternative to university. Launched earlier this year by regional independent insurance broking group, Brokerbility, the scheme has already been shortlisted in the Insurance Times Awards 2014 for Innovation of the Year and Training Excellence & Impact awards
Nineteen year old Lizzey who attended Bournemouth School for Girls and Daisy, seventeen, a former student of King Arthurs School and Strode College, both completed successful psychometric and ability tests and were then invited to attend a face-to-face interview with Alan & Thomas HR Director Susan Reeves, who recommended them both for the apprenticeship scheme.
They recently joined twenty of their fellow young apprentices in London on a two day induction programme. During the induction, Lizzey and Daisy heard from senior industry figures including Sandy Scott, CEO of the Chartered Insurance Institute and Steve White, CEO of British Insurance Brokers Association who provided an overview of the insurance and broking industry. Neil Clutterbuck, Director of Underwriting & Technical at Allianz also spoke to the apprentices about the importance of professionalism and professional qualifications, drawing from his twenty five years industry experience. The group also heard from Lee McQueen, the 2008 winner of the BBC series "The Apprentice", who shared his life story and explained the importance of planning in order to reach goals and ambitions. Finally, the group was treated to a tour of the Lloyds of London building.
Susan Reeves of Alan & Thomas has been instrumental in getting the Brokerbility Academy off the ground and is confident the scheme will start to pay dividends for the insurance industry, "Having young qualified insurance professionals coming into the industry year after year is a positive move for our industry and something that has been lacking over the past decade or so. By introducing this new and innovative scheme, it will enable young people to gain work experience and a qualification, which will help them pursue a real career in insurance".
Following the two day induction, Lizzey said "The Brokerbility Academy has provided me with a real opportunity to develop a career in the insurance industry. It's a real alternative to going to university and unlike most apprenticeship programmes has great on the job training and continuous assessment, which can help me reach my goals."
Daisy is equally enthusiastic about her new role, "I am pleased to have joined the scheme and am looking forward to gaining some real work experience, whilst at the same time gaining a valuable qualification that will help me in my future career".
Lizzey and Daisy will now start the CII Accredited Apprenticeship programme whilst working at Alan & Thomas offices in Poole, Gillingham, Dorchester and Frome.