Jim McGlynn- BSc (Hons) Public Health Practitioner

Bury Council

Why did you choose to study an apprenticeship?

This was offered through work, and I thought that it may well support my career pathway.

Looking back over your time on the apprenticeship so far, how have you found the whole experience? 

At first, I found it very challenging as I have been out of formal education for some years. The content was very interesting and aligned with some of my work, but the admin procedures around timesheets and portfolio have been time-consuming of which I did not allow for and have surpassed the 3-5 hours of advised home study time from the University entrance information. I have learnt to adapt now, although not perfectly, to the courses demands but still have some work to do in academic areas to improve. Some 
of the module bandwidth is very broad as is public health so it’s been a challenge trying to find evidence on the job to support the learning in lectures and represent that via assignments and portfolio. That all said I have enjoyed using the academic learning in my job role and can see how it fits.

How would you describe the support that you’ve received 
from the University of Salford?

The wrap around support from the university and the course lectures has been second to none to be honest. Having the time to utilise that support to its full potential has been a challenge.

What has been your proudest achievement on your apprenticeship to date?

Honesty this has been passing the modules and submitting a portfolio. I do not class myself to be academic and have to be really engaged in a subject in order to absorb information. So, to say that I am now in my second year at University are words I never thought I would hear myself say. Also due to a timely restructure within our own Public Health Team I have had the opportunity to apply and be successful in obtaining the role of Public Health Practitioner for Mental Health and Wellbeing. This wouldn’t have been possible if I hadn’t been seen to be engaging in an appropriate professional qualification in Public Health due to the application criteria.

What do you want to do once you complete your apprenticeship?

Continue to work in a Public Health environment and utilise all my learning to build a reputation of being an excellent Public Health Practitioner and to really make a difference to my local community 
via projects of intervention. Also, to keep up with CPD to maintain and increase my knowledge around Public Health topics.

What would you say to someone considering an apprenticeship?

You must be wholly invested in doing the degree, do not take it lightly. There is a lot of work that needs to be completed and although support is available you must be able to also work on your own initiatives. Make sure you will be supported be your employer across the time of the degree and premeditate the time needed to commit to the work that needs to be produced.