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Choosing a Foundation Apprenticeship has helped Mohamad Dawas improve his English skills as well as opening his eyes to a range of potential careers.

Arriving in Scotland with barely a word of English, he was unsure what his future would hold.

Thanks to his Foundation Apprenticeship, the 16-year-old Inverurie Academy pupil now has an insight into the world of work.

Improved technical and language skills

Syrian-born Mohamad chose a Foundation Apprenticeship alongside his other school subjects.

He now spends time each week in the school’s laboratories as part of his Scientific Technologies Foundation Apprenticeship.

Foundation Apprenticeships allow pupils to gain a qualification at the same level as a Higher and are recognised by all of Scotland’s universities and colleges.

Mohamad believes this type of learning is the “perfect set up” for him, as his language skills improve alongside his technical abilities.

He explained: “We came to Scotland via another Arabic country. It’s a completely different culture here and at first it was difficult to adapt.

“The school was really supportive of me. I used to have difficulty understanding what the teachers were saying because I couldn’t speak the language very well. My English skills have improved as a result of my Foundation Apprenticeship.

“Doing my placements is great because I meet lots of people and get work to do. This has helped me to develop.”

Launchpad for future career

Inverurie-based Mohamad is open minded about his future but thinks he would like to get his teeth into a career in dentistry.

He believes his Foundation Apprenticeship will act as a launchpad for whatever career he decides to embark on.

Mohamad said: “The Foundation Apprenticeship has been really good and I’d recommend it to others. It can help you get to where you need to be.

“Foundation Apprenticeships help people to kick on and do what they want to do. It looks good if you have already done some work before applying for jobs and university.”

Inverurie Academy Science Technician Sheila Innes said: “I have two pupils who are working on their Foundation Apprenticeships with me – Mohamad and Ali. They now have experience of working in a real science lab environment. This will look good on their CVs.”

Sheila believes the practical aspects of Mohamad’s Foundation Apprenticeship were an ideal starting point which also benefited his language skills and helped him gain confidence.

More information

To find out more about Foundation Apprenticeships visit apprenticeships.scot

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SDS is one of the delivery partners for the Scottish Government's guaranteed offer of a place in education or training for all 16 to 19-year-olds through Opportunities for All. Our case studies provide real-life examples of our support of youth employment,

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