By Isaura Johnston

Apprentice, Smart Energy Expert

One of our new apprentices, Isaura Johnston talks about changing careers to become an engineer and how an apprenticeship was the right choice for her.

With lockdown putting the health and fitness industry in limbo, it put the rest of my life into perspective. Like many people, my life seemed tethered to a lifestyle that was on pause.

I had to transform my mind and my body by going through the motions while no longer being anchored to the same routines. Like many, this manifested in another struggle I wasn't ready for.

Just like my favourite TV show The Challenge, I needed to find a way to challenge myself beyond the creative silence and above the solitude. My growing need for a shift in careers just scratched the surface. I wanted growth to happen without being qualified. But how could I keep personable connections, continue to build rapport, and have a meaningful influence on others’ lifestyles from one hour to the next. It had begun...teaching virtual Pilates classes wasn't the same and my clients felt the same. But our hands were tied.

Perhaps you’re just like me, always wanting to learn new things. I decided to upskill myself, to complement my Pilates practice by learning web development and gaining the knowledge and skills to become a professional and reliable independent assessor.

Ultimately, I was exploring what really made me tick and holistically what motivated and pushed me and how my identity was so prolifically defined by my career.

Then I stumbled across an ad to become a British Gas engineer. I knew an apprenticeship would push me and give me new skills, and a solid trade, with the potential to get further qualifications in areas such as EV charging or heat pump installations. And the British Gas partnership with Tech She Can they really spoke to me. Every aspect collaborated with my current skill set and future ideals. Obviously, there was much to learn, and that played into my hands. My true fear of failing was never able to manifest; it was British Gas who simply eased me in and supported me one step at a time.

My advice would be if you are thinking about going through the British Gas engineering academy is to enjoy it... But, never forget the importance of dedicating the time for yourself and fully understanding what you need for your learning style and development. Everyone is very supportive within the academy and the groups you come across are always happy to share their knowledge - which is useful when you start to hear your exams are next week. Once you get through those presentations, you start to develop your skill set and see how having to break down complex problems in smaller parts with practical applications pertains to being a Smart Energy Expert.   

Your efforts and determination to succeed will lead you through your own journey and allow you to dominate your career, whilst being be part of a caring community.

So, what are you waiting for? Start your journey today and apply here.