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Craft Butcher Marc is a cut above after completing a Modern Apprenticeship

#ScotAppWeek24 Apprenticeships
Marc smiles at the camera in front of the counter at the butcher's shop where he works

A Modern Apprenticeship has been life changing for young butcher Marc Ingram, who has overcome personal challenges to succeed and helped boost business for his employer.  

Marc, 18, worried about his career options when he left Falkirk High at 15 with few qualifications because of his dyslexia and ADHD. 

The teenager applied for a Modern Apprenticeship in Food and Drink Operations (Butchery) through a school initiative and hasn’t looked back.  

Working with a team of butchers at Blair Drummond Smiddy, Stirlingshire, helped him gain skills and competence in many aspects of the trade and inspired him to want his own shop one day. 

He quickly became a key member of the team, completing his apprenticeship and playing a significant role in the 24% growth the business has achieved. 

Marc, 18, said: “I used to feel so ashamed that I couldn’t read or write properly but doing the Modern Apprenticeship has totally changed my life. 

“Being able to go into a workplace, earn money and learn at the same time was the best feeling ever. When I was younger, I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to work or move out of home – I can’t believe how far I’ve come. 

“I want other young people to know there are still great career pathways such as apprenticeships, even if school wasn’t for them.” 

Marc passed his driving test, bought his own car and a motorbike and is now saving up to move into his own home. 

He regularly receives glowing customer feedback, was invited by Quality Meat Scotland to share his journey on a webinar they hosted and has visited his old school to inspire other pupils to apply for apprenticeships. 

Marc also applied the same dedication and determination in his personal life – successfully losing eight stone in a year. 

His achievements have led to him being a finalist at the Scottish Apprenticeship Awards in the Modern Apprentice of the Year SCQF Level 5 category sponsored by SQA. 

Modern Apprenticeships are jobs open to anyone aged 16 and over who wants to work, learn and earn. 

Modern Apprentices spend most of their time learning in the workplace while being supported by a local college or specialist training provider to gain an industry recognised qualification. 

Blair Drummond Smiddy Farm Shop Fresh Counter Manager Fraser Sivewright said: “What Marc has done is just awe-inspiring – he really is the model butcher and I now lean on him as a senior colleague. 

“I am immensely proud of Marc, his values and everything he brings to his work and the tremendous personal growth he has already achieved.” 

Craft Skills Scotland Assessor Sarah Frew said: “Marc is a breath of fresh air, so confident and knowledgeable.  

“He has such a drive and passion for the industry, nothing holds him back.” 

Marc and Fraser stand with arms crossed smiling to camera in front of a wooden clad building that houses the Smiddy Farm Shop where they work.

Find out more

The winner of the Modern Apprentice of the Year Level 5 category sponsored by SQA will be revealed during Scottish Apprenticeship Week, which takes place from 4 to 8 March.

Opens in a new window Go to the awards website