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How I kick-started my career with a DIO apprenticeship

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Apprentices, Working at DIO

Pictured is James Davies, Apprentice of the Year in the middle holding up his framed certificate award. He is wearing a brown suit with a white shirt and black tie. Pictured on his left is CEO of DIO Graham Dalton in a black suit and grey tie. Pictured on his right is DIO's head of communications Emma Reynolds, in a greay dress and black blazer.
James Davies receiving his Apprentice of the Year Award [Crown Copyright/MOD2019]
From visiting marine sites to supporting multi-million infrastructure projects and travelling the Defence estate to see how soldiers live, work and train, an apprenticeship at DIO can offer a range of unique opportunities. This week is National Apprenticeship Week and I’d like to take the opportunity to tell you about the varied work that I’ve been involved with as a Project Management Apprentice as well as my Apprentice of the Year award win!

Since earning a Sports Journalism degree in 2013, I’ve worked in numerous jobs, moving from office to office with no real career progression and no enjoyment of work. When I saw an advert online for an apprenticeship at DIO, I knew it was an opportunity to kick start my career in an interesting and ever-changing environment where the work I carried out would make a huge difference to the Armed Forces.

I started my apprenticeship with the Major Projects and Programmes team in August 2018 and since then I’ve had the chance to work on some fascinating projects and visit some interesting sites. I’ve been lucky enough to spend a week at HMNB Clyde and gain insight into the challenging world of delivering marine based nuclear infrastructure projects. I’ve also had the opportunity to work on Project Wellesley at Worthy Down, a £330 million regeneration project. As part of this work, I’ve run my own projects, including helping to build infrastructure to train future Royal Navy staff to operate at sea.

Throughout my time at DIO, I’ve always been supported, both in my day-to-day role and with my apprenticeship portfolio and coursework. Coming into the world of Defence projects and acronyms with no previous experience of anything like this was daunting to begin with, but with the help of my line manager and my mentor I feel I’ve been able to achieve a lot of success which will help me have a long and successful career at DIO.

Last year, I won the Apprenticeship of the Year award at the DIO Values Awards, this has helped boost my confidence and showed me that the work I have completed over the last 15 months is appreciated and recognised by DIO.

I would recommend an apprenticeship to anyone who is interested, it’s a great way to learn new skills and gain experience while being paid at the same time. You’ll also achieve a nationally recognised qualification at the end of it.

DIO offers a wide range of apprenticeships to help people kick start their career and develop specialist skills in areas such as estate surveying, chartered management and data insight.

For future opportunities at DIO, please keep an eye on our LinkedIn page and on Civil Service Jobs.

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