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‘Stunned’ Amy is apprentice of the year

Amy Garrick: 'I really love my job.'

A LITERATURE graduate who has just completed her four-year apprenticeship as an electrician with Shetland Islands Council has been named Scottish apprentice of the year.

Amy Garrick said she was “stunned and overwhelmed” when she was announced as the overall winner during an awards ceremony in Glasgow, on Friday night.

The 27-year-old started her apprenticeship after discovering there were few career opportunities for someone with a degree in literary studies.

She said she had always been a practical and creative person, attributes that helped her to get on well in her chosen career.

“For the future I am planning to do my ‘approved’, which I will be able to do in a year. It is another exam that would give me essentially a higher level of responsibility.

“I really love my job, I want to get more experienced and learn more about it to get better at it.

“It is a lovely bunch of people I work with, very nice and supportive. I understand it is going to become more challenging, but then you have to put more creative thought into your job and save money at the same time. It certainly doesn’t put me off,” she said.

Amy was shortlisted for the award earlier in the summer on the strength of her exam results.

This was followed by interviews in Aberdeen and Edinburgh by assessors from SELECT, the authoritative trade body for the electro-technical sector in Scotland.

Amy said she had no inkling of her success when travelling to the awards ceremony on Friday.

“We got to go on to the stage to receive our certificates for being a finalist, but they didn’t tell any of us until after we got the certificates who actually won the award.

“It was quite a surprise. I’m overjoyed – it’s been a nerve-racking process, but I’m really proud to have won the award in the end.

“It’s something I couldn’t have achieved without the support of my colleagues – everyone’s been very supportive, and how well I’ve done is a reflection of how well I’ve been taught and helped along the way,” she said.

Newell McGuiness, managing director of SELECT, said: “It is clear that Amy is an exceptional young woman who, according to her employers, demonstrates an excellent attitude towards her work and always adopts a ‘can do’ attitude towards any task.”

Newly appointed council chief executive Mark Boden said: “This is a fantastic achievement by Amy; it demonstrates how hard she has worked and her high level of skill. We are all very proud of her.”