When Nyomi left school at 16, she wasn’t sure what the future held until a local youth group put her in touch with the Heathrow Employment & Skills Academy. “I’ve always been a practical hands-on type of person and school just wasn’t for me” explains Nyomi. “The Academy helped me realise that I still had a lot to offer, and with their help I was able to find a job as Sales Assistant in World Duty Free.” Whilst in this role, Nyomi enrolled on the Retail Skills Apprenticeship Level 2 but this would turn out to be a challenging journey to navigate.

Due to personal circumstances Nyomi began to find it hard to commit to the Apprenticeship. It was during this difficult time that Nyomi was able to lean on Vocational Assessor Funke and Mentor, Jo. Nyomi explains, “They encouraged me to focus on the positives and helped me believe in myself again. I learnt that when things in life aren’t going well, it’s easy to give up, but I carried on and I’m really proud of myself for that.” Nyomi achieved her Level 2 Apprenticeship in Retail Skills and has just completed her Level 3 Apprenticeship

in the same subject. At the Academy’s Graduation and Awards Ceremony, she received an additional Learners Recognition Award for her hard work and commitment, and at the same ceremony was also recognised as an Apprenticeship Ambassador for supporting other people on their learning journeys.

“When I received my Apprenticeship qualification I was so happy I cried! It was the first thing that I’d seen through to the end and I had this amazing qualification to show for all of the hard work. I wasn’t expecting to be selected as an Apprenticeship Ambassador, but it’s great to share my story and inspire others to find their own path of learning. It may not always be easy, but it’s worth it.”