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Joel - Tech Degree Apprenticeship

How did you join PwC? Technology Degree Apprenticeship at the University of Birmingham and I’m currently in the first year of my Computer Science degree. 

Tell us about your role or programme

Attending the Computer Science Open Day at Birmingham, the admissions officer spoke to us about the PwC Degree Apprenticeship programme. The idea of an apprenticeship integrating academic learning with work experience, really appealed to me and I went away determined to investigate this further. Following my application, online exercises and attendance at a PwC Career Focus Day, I was incredibly excited to receive a call from PwC offering me a place on the Technology Degree Apprenticeship. I’m in the first year of my Computer Science degree at Birmingham University as part of the PwC Technology Degree Apprenticeship. This summer I’ll be working in PwC’s London office as part of the program and will also be spending my third year as a full placement year with them. 

What do you enjoy most?

I’ve enjoyed getting to know the other Tech Degree Apprentices who are studying with me at Birmingham. We’re still able to have the same full university experience as other Computer Science students while also gaining lots of relevant industry experience through working at PwC. Our group is very diverse and I feel the financial support the programme offers has made the opportunity accessible to people who might not have otherwise considered university.

As a PwC Apprentice I also enjoy being an ambassador for the firm. Recently I contacted my secondary school and asked if I could give a presentation to the sixth-formers who are studying Computer Science. I don’t think many of them knew about all of the opportunities available to them beforehand, but it was clear they were very interested in the programme. In a large state school, for most students the ability to start a career without having huge student debt makes a PwC Apprenticeship an amazing opportunity.        

What's your biggest challenge?

My biggest challenge when I started on the apprenticeship was living away from home for the first time; I’m in self-catering accommodation so cooking for myself has definitely had challenging moments! 

What have you achieved at PwC or on your programme that you are most proud of? 

I’m most proud of my work on computer programming assignments using the Java programming language. Although this was a completely new language for me, I very much enjoyed learning it and being able to transfer my knowledge from lectures into practical assignments.

What do you think the future holds for you?

I’m looking forward to my summer placement with PwC which will help me to decide which area of Technology I’d like to continue my career in.  Spending my third year in industry at PwC will also be a great way to apply my academic knowledge to real life problems. Once I complete the degree, and gain at least a 2:1, I’ll be able to  work for PwC full-time, progressing my career in the technology sector.

What has been your biggest surprise about a career at PwC?

For me, one of the unexpected advantages of the PwC apprenticeship has been the advice and support offered by degree apprentice students in the year above me. I also feel very lucky to have PwC’s support to help me throughout my degree.

Describe your career at PwC in 3 words

Interesting, exciting and enjoyable