Skip to main

James raised the bar as a Foundation Apprentice


James Carr is now a strong candidate to pursue a career in law or politics after successfully electing to take a Foundation Apprenticeship in Business Skills.

James, 19, from Hamilton found out about Foundation Apprenticeships when he was choosing his subjects in fifth year at Saint John Ogilvie High School. He also spoke to people who had previously done apprenticeships and decided this was the route for him. 

Year one of James's SCQF Level 6 Foundation Apprenticeship was delivered in the school hub where he learned about business.   

In the second year, during his work-placement with South Lanarkshire Council, the driven teen put his knowledge to the test to lead a team in the run up to the elections. His team prepared and delivered a marketing strategy to encourage the 16 to 18 age group to vote. James was responsible for creating an Instagram advert, recording voice-overs, creating posters and managing market research.

Southlanarkshirecounci James Carr 009

James said: “My goal with this project during my apprenticeship was to make sure everyone, including people with learning disabilities, understood how the elections worked and had the opportunity to vote.” 

During his apprenticeship James’  work ethic was praised by his college lecturer and he is now doing an HNC in Legal Studies. 

Foundation Apprenticeships are delivered in the area through a partnership between South Lanarkshire Council and South Lanarkshire College. Foundation Apprenticeships are subject choices that provide pupils with the skills employers need with a work-based learning qualification at the same level as a Higher. 

A Foundation Apprenticeship is a very good subject choice as you're gaining a highly-recognised industry qualification. If anyone asks me about an apprenticeship, I say 'why are you not doing it?

James Carr

former Foundation Apprentice

A pilot programme of Foundation Apprenticeships at SCQF Levels 4 and 5 are for S3-S6 pupils. 

James said: “A Foundation Apprenticeship is a very good subject choice as you're gaining a highly-recognised industry qualification. If anyone asks me about an apprenticeship, I say 'why are you not doing it?'.  

“A Foundation Apprenticeship gives you huge benefits. The apprenticeship gives you picture of what work is like for when you leave high school and go out into the world. I'm always up for a challenge and the Foundation Apprenticeship was an excellent opportunity.” 

Morag Watt, Foundation Apprenticeship team leader in Youth Employability Service with South Lanarkshire Council, said: “The Council is forward thinking and recognises that not all students learn the same way and that there are real benefits to vocational work-based learning. Foundation Apprenticeships are good for young people and the Council. We have a valuable pool of resources in young people at school who are enthused, skilled, dynamic and motivated, It can only be to our benefit if apprentices go onto work with the Council in different roles from business to child care."  

Morag added: “During his Foundation Apprenticeship I worked really closely with James when he became involved with the Council's election team and I saw how he took the lead. He articulately presented findings to some of the Council management team as part of his work-based learning project. It was a joy to see how he gained so much confidence during his Foundation Apprenticeship and that led him them apply to go to college. It was great working with him.” 

Julie McGrane, lecturer at South Lanarkshire College who nominated James for the Scottish Apprenticeship Awards, said: “During his Foundation Apprenticeship James was so enthusiastic about his election project and clear about what his part was going to be. His group really respected him and his ideas and his work ethic really stood out. His confidence grew because he was doing such good work. He did well on the project management side and using all the software and technology during his apprenticeship.” 

As a result of his achievements, James was a finalist in the Foundation Apprenticeship category proudly sponsored by the Scottish Funding Council at the Scottish Apprenticeship Awards. James said: “I've made my mum, all my family and myself proud by getting to the finals in the Foundation Apprentice category.”