The Right Choice…

CCHQ4th April 2012

Apprentice blogger,  Rachel Shackleton shares her experiences as an apprentice inside CCHQ. 

The first 5 months at CCHQ have flown by. So much has happened whilst I have been working here.  The Big Budget, the CPF Spring Convention, the CPF Winter Conference and of course the CCHQ Christmas party.

Winter Conference was my first CPF event that I was involved in organising. I was honestly shocked at the amount of organising and planning that goes into one weekend. Although a lot of hard work went into the event I really enjoyed helping out and would love to do this more in the future.

University or Apprenticeship? Although I knew what a brilliant opportunity working at CCHQ was, I was still worried if I’d made the right decision. Everyone around me seemed to be moving away from home starting new life’s miles away. But, after having spent what little time I have here, I can honestly say I definitely made the right decision.  Not only am I discovering daily the different elements in politics but I am also learning valuable life skills working here for 5 months. More than I could have ever achieved by doing a degree. I am at the heart of the Party.

A question that is continuously reoccurring is ‘What do you actually do at CCHQ? What is your job role? 5 months in and I still can’t answer. My job role is vast, I can be doing tasks such as filing and copying one minute, taking minutes, and assisting Rachel in organizing events the next, giving me the opportunity to learn more.

Although I am learning skills at work we also attend college every other Thursday so we can gain a NVQ level2 qualification. Our lessons are based in the Houses of Parliament and our little group get on really well.

The Parliamentary event was eye opening; I naively assumed every MP would jump on the apprentice bandwagon and hire an apprentice.  Hopefully with the new budget more MP’s will see the amazing opportunity they are able to give young people wanting to start a career in politics.


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