Georgia Pleasants is one of a new wave of apprentices arriving at Sizewell C. The project offers a huge opportunity for young people in the region, with around 1,500 apprenticeship opportunities coming available during the construction phase of the project.
Like many people her age, Georgia had to weigh up an apprenticeship versus university after a period of deep uncertainty.
“COVID 19 hit while I was doing my A levels,” she says, “so that was a huge adjustment alone, trying to learn over a screen. At that time, things like work experience obviously couldn’t go ahead, which meant there was a lot of people really undecided on what career routes to go down as we couldn’t get that first-hand experience in. Lots of people my age just went straight to uni as they didn’t know what else to do: now they’re coming to the end of their degrees still unsure on what to do!
“For me, getting stability around my future career was really important – and now I get to experience what the workplace is like first-hand, while learning at the same time.
For Georgia, a big plus was being able to access an opportunity so close to home, when previously so many of her friends have had to leave the area to seek out opportunities.
“I am a Suffolk girl through-and-through; I live about 25 minutes from the Sizewell C site, which is perfect: it’s in the local community, right on my doorstep, there’s fantastic benefits, brilliant support, and the teams are amazing to work with.”
Another big win was having the opportunity to pursue exactly a career direction that so closely mirrors her natural interests.
“I’ve always had an interest in the people side of a business after studying A level Business and Psychology, so being able to have a clear route into HR was massive tick for me too. My background is very different to what I am doing now: I have worked in retail, hospitality, childcare, I’ve been a Saturday girl at a hairdresser’s, and straight after A levels I was self-employed working with horses and coaching young riders. I don’t have a plan set in stone, but now I feel like I’m getting the guidance and experience to help me find the career route I want to go down, whether that’s business partnering, recruitment, or employee relations.”
So out of uncertainty, Georgia found a new confidence in her future by choosing an apprenticeship, and she is keen to recommend the option to others in the region too. “Apprenticeships are a very good way to get an education, get some qualifications, and be working at the same time, she says. “It really sets you up to be ready for the workplace. I get to speak to lots of different people, the opportunities are endless, and you learn something new every single day. If you’re looking for an apprenticeship in East Suffolk, I would recommend Sizewell C as a first choice.”
Meet more apprentices from the nuclear sector here.