Stafford and Rural Homes | Sasha urges more youngsters to earn as they learn with an apprenticeship

Sasha urges more youngsters to earn as they learn with an apprenticeship

A 17-year-old girl from Stafford is urging more young people to consider earning as they learn with an apprenticeship – after proving you can build a successful career outside the classroom.

Sasha Turnbull, who is studying a 12 month apprenticeship in Business Administration at housing association Stafford and Rural Homes (SARH), says the chance to gain experience in the work environment, earn a NVQ Level 2 qualification and avoid thousands of pounds of debts has set her on the right path for the future.

The former Blessed William Howard Catholic School student said: “I got tired of sitting in a classroom year after year. I wanted to get out there in the workplace and earn my own money, get some qualifications and start to learn more in the real world.

“I did well at school but after the first year of Sixth Form I decided¬† I was ready for a change. I wanted to carry on learning and find a career whilst gaining experience in a work place environment. The thought of another four years of A-Level and university work really wasn’t for me.

Sasha applied for the role with SARH after seeing an advert on the Government’s apprenticeships website, and now works for the landlord’s Governance team.

“I love it,” she said. “I have learned a lot from the team and I’m studying for a qualification as well. I’ve got some big ambitions about what I want to achieve in my career and I feel like I’m well on my way. I want to keep learning and eventually work my way up into management, and hopefully one day head up a department.”

Despite a lot of her former school friends heading off to university in September, Sasha says she feels like she has made the right choice for her future.

“I don’t want to spend years in lectures and get into lots of debt,” she added. “I’m earning my own money and feel like I have started on a very strong career path.”

SARH, which has just claimed a top 10 spot in the Sunday Times Top 100 Best Not for Profit Organisations to Work For list, has an annual programme for employing apprentices across its trades and office teams, and runs its own Apprenticeship Academy providing structured one year programmes that allow people to work across different sections of the organisation to learn new skills.

The landlord also runs a pre-apprenticeship programme for unemployed young people aged 16-24, to help them gain valuable work experience.

Jo Hough, Head of Organisational Development at SARH, said: “We are committed to helping young people living in our communities into jobs that inspire them, and our apprenticeship programme is a great way of doing that.

“It is extremely rewarding to see people like Sasha loving the work they do and learning on the job. We are sure that this is the start of a very promising career for her.”

For more information about learning and employment opportunities with SARH visit

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