Laura’s Apprenticeship Journey

My name is Laura, I currently work for Fred. Olsen Travel as a Digital Marketing Assistant. I have recently completed my Digital Marketing L3 apprenticeship with Blue Sky.


        What does your role involve?

My role includes writing and uploading weekly blog posts for the various websites under Fred. Olsen Travel. This includes Fred.\ Cruises, GoCruise&Travel, TravelQuest, Fred.\ Holidays and Fred.\ Hotel Jardin Tecina. I also design and send out marketing emails to customers as well as different versions for our travel agents under the Fred.\ Holidays and Fred.\ Hotel Jardin Tecina brands.

I write website content for the Fred.\ Holidays and GoCruise&Travel sites. This includes destinations, travel types, cruise lines, river cruises and tour operators. Recently I have been taught how to use a piece of software called Ragic, where I can now upload new products such as river cruise itineraries onto RiversOfTheWorld and Fred.\ River Cruises.

Finally, to further my design knowledge and broaden my portfolio, I am participating in online tutorials from Adobe on Photoshop tips, tricks and skills. I also write content for the Fred.\ Holidays brochures.


        What was the apprenticeship process like?

At first, I found the apprenticeship process a little daunting as I’m sure most do. However, after going through VQ Manager with Mel over the phone, having regular meetings with Jane and speaking to previous Blue Sky apprentices in the company, I soon found my feet.

The process as a whole went extremely quickly and I’m very pleased with the outcome. The first few steps involved learning the basics of VQ Manager, but once I got the hang of it, I was fine. After I got into the swing of writing up answers to my criteria the process was well underway. A requirement for my apprenticeship was to complete an ICT L2 Functional Skills exam as I didn’t do the subject at GCSE or A level. With the help from Lou I passed with a good score.

I had monthly meetings/Skype calls with Chris who was able to teach me the more complex parts of my apprenticeship which weren’t directly connected to my job role. Although these were challenging, I was able to complete them with the helpful calls and excellent feedback after marking.


        What is the best thing you’ve learnt?

The best thing I’ve learnt is my potential and what I am capable of. All the time I say “If someone had told me a year ago that I would’ve done what I’ve done, I would’ve said they’re mad!” It’s nice to be able to look back at all of the work I managed to produce and think, “Wow, I’ve done all of that.” It feels very rewarding and shows that I learnt a great deal in a relatively short space of time.


        What are you most proud about?

I am most proud of my website that I created from scratch. For one of my modules I had to create a CMS Site on WordPress. I decided to write my website on travel as I have visited many amazing places, so it was nice to be given the opportunity to do what I want.

I now can say I have my very own website that I created from scratch and it is fully working and able for people to visit and read my work. I have had many compliments on it and I am extremely proud to say I’ve created it and show it off.


        What would your advice be for those considering an apprenticeship?

Try not to get overwhelmed at the start and don’t be afraid to ask questions, whether it be to your line manager, Blue Sky Assessor/ Development Advisor or previous apprentices. Everyone is willing to help others and although it may be daunting at first, it’s the best way to learn.


        What are your next learning steps?

My next learning steps are to expand my work portfolio. For example writing more blog posts, having more responsibility when adding products onto websites, writing more brochure content and expanding my design knowledge.

In this new job role, I just want to further my knowledge and expand my skills so that in the future I can be seen as an all-round candidate.


I would just like to say a massive thank you to everyone who I spoke to and was in contact with at Blue Sky. You were all amazing and extremely polite, friendly and helpful.


Fred. Olsen Travel

Published 19/05/2020 & Filed in Blue Sky Blog