The Managing Director of Wrilec looks back on his time as an apprentice

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To celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, we have interviewed people working in the construction industry who started their careers as apprentices. Meet Phil Wright, who started his career as an electrical installation apprentice and is now the founder/director of Wrilec.

I took part in an electrical installation apprenticeship for a company called P E Coleman Electrical Services. This required me to also attend West Suffolk College and complete my apprenticeship at Westminster City College. As an apprentice I was required to complete 1st fixing & then 2nd fixing domestic properties, fetching and carrying and generally keeping the work areas clean and tidy. I also made the tea for 2 years, things were different in the 1990s to what they are today and sometimes being an apprentice was tough but that was part of it those days.

“I wouldn’t say that I chose an apprenticeship, I would say it chose me. I found a job that I was pretty good at working with a really good group of electricians. I enjoyed the site work and found the theory side interesting as well. I had respect for my college lecturers and am still in touch with one or two of them now. I think the best thing about my apprenticeship was that I formed working relationships with people that still last to this day. By virtue of being an electrician, you develop a tidy and logical mind which helps in all walks of my life. I’m very passionate about training and have mentored a number of apprentices and adult learners over the years.

If I had to give one piece of advice to future apprentices I would say your college work is very important, and it’s very easy to get behind, especially with logging time on the job hours. You need to hit the ground running and take the help and support that your colleagues and lecturers and support staff give you.