Get Support

Featured Apprentice Story

Pennon Group

Meg manages various drinking and waste water capital schemes across Cornwall and Devon, these involve installing new pipework and other underground assets. These vital programmes help support our company objectives which improve water quality, water quantity, amenity and biodiversity within the region. Meg went to Sixth Form and took English Literature (grade A), Drama (grade A) and Biology (grade B). Meg fell pregnant in the summer before Year 13 commenced and gave birth to her daughter just before her exams during lockdown. She then took a gap year, as a type of maternity leave, before starting at Exeter University studying MSci Nursing (Combined Adult and Mental Health). Meg was forced to medically withdraw due to complications with her feet/ankles and the upcoming surgeries which prevented her from standing and undertaking the required shift work. Meg then trained as an Emergency Medical Dispatcher for the South Western Ambulance Service, answering 999 calls from the general public. This is when she decided to find a career that could help her develop academically, whilst supporting herself and her daughter. Meg found the Level 4 Associate Project Management Apprenticeship at South West Water in the Infrastructure Team and it allowed her to do just that.

In applying for her apprenticeship, Meg sought support from the Young Women’s Trust (YWT). The charity played a pivotal role in kick-starting Meg's career through their ‘Work It Out’ Service where they helped review her application and CV. This support proved vital in helping Meg obtain her apprenticeship. From this personal insight into the charity’s work and the help they provided, Meg sought to promote the charity within Pennon Group, she approach the CEO and explained how the charity helps women progress their careers in Engineering. Meg explained that seeing more women in engineering was both a personal goal for her and a key objective for the company. Meg has led in developing a corporate partnership between Pennon and the Young Women's Trust to work together to build a more equal and inclusive, workplace and industry.

Meg is an enthusiastic promoter of apprenticeships and a member of the South West Apprenticeship Ambassador Network. Meg is a champion for young, disabled women within Engineering. She has been interviewed by Devon and Cornwall Live about her apprenticeship journey and supports school visits promoting apprenticeships as a positive career choice.

Meg recently supported Robert Halfon's Ministerial visit to the Oasis Academy in Bristol where employers and apprentices promoted apprenticeships to over 250 school pupils - with survey results from the visit showing that '100% of students are more likely to apply for an apprenticeship than they were before the session' and many student quotes saying 'I have changed my opinion on going to university as I was inspired to take on an apprenticeship since it seems like a much better option'.

Meg has produced case studies explaining her personal journey and how she balances a career in Engineering, studying for her apprenticeship and being a young mum. She is currently filming a day in the life video to be broadcast during The Big Assembly in National Apprenticeship Week 2024 to over 100,000 students.

Meg is not slowing down - in fact the opposite, as she is now approaching her end point assessment on her current apprenticeship, she has her sights sets to progress further. Meg is starting her A level Maths in January 2024, with the aim to start a degree apprenticeship in Civil Engineering at Exeter University later in the year.

As a wheelchair user and young mum, who has not had the typical route into an apprenticeship, this award would give Meg an increased platform and greater visibility to promote apprenticeships for those in similar circumstances or face personal challenges.