From University to Award-Winning Apprentice: How Cara Ellis Found Success Through Apprenticeships

Cara Ellis: A Shining Example of Apprenticeship Success


Cara Ellis, a Level 4 Sports Coach apprentice with PAMFA Sports Limited, was recently awarded the Educationwise Academy Apprentice of the Term Award for Spring 2023. “I am delighted to be receiving this award,” Cara said. “It was a shock to even be considered for it, so to have won it was incredible.”


Cara’s journey to becoming an apprentice started when she realised that university wasn’t the right fit for her.

“After studying at university for a year, I found it really wasn’t for me,” Cara explained. “I’ve never been someone that can properly learn in a lecture-style environment. That was when I found the apprenticeship I am currently on. It had everything the uni course had but more. I could do the work and get the experience I wanted at the same time as learning. It was the perfect solution for me, and the experience so far has been amazing.”

Like any new apprentices, Cara faced challenges at the start of her journey.

My biggest challenge so far has been adapting,” Cara admitted. “When I first came onto the apprenticeship, there was an overwhelming number of things to learn straight away just to function. For example, I had to learn how to use and properly function all of the systems that both PAMFA and Educationwise use. It was a huge nest of information that I had to learn and use daily. I overcame the stress and pressure of this by creating my own system of how to understand and learn all of their systems.  I also reached out to my PAMFA mentor, Ian Crowe, who was a great help.”

Cara’s mentor, Ian Crowe, has shared his thoughts on her work and success as an apprentice. According to Ian, Cara has taken on enrichment sessions in a new school, which has resulted in the school signing up for regular curricular and afterschool sessions.

Her professionalism and commitment to core values have been essential in securing this new work for the organisation.

Ian also noted that Cara has been an inspiration to other apprentices due to her hard work and perseverance. She has been able to put theory into practice during her apprenticeship, which has given her a clear picture of her own identity as a coach.

Despite these challenges, Cara has thrived as an apprentice, both personally and professionally. “The apprenticeship has helped me develop professionally because it gives endless opportunity to reflect on my own work and how I need to improve,” Cara said.

“I have developed personally because I now have a better understanding of my own limits and when I need to, I give myself a break to decompress and enjoy time outside of work and my sport.”

For anyone considering an apprenticeship, Cara has some advice. “Explore your possibilities within your passion,” she said.

“There are so many different paths we can take, and a lot of the time we are more inclined to take the same path as everyone else, but it is important to understand that your journey is individual to you and can take you anywhere. An apprenticeship is a hard job that comes with many different highs and lows, but it’s the only opportunity I know of that allows me to do what I love and learn on the side.”

Cara’s story is a shining example of the power of apprenticeships for both learners and employers.

“Cara had a rocky start and could have possibly been taken off the program, but she turned things around and is working well,” noted the nomination statement from Ryan Moore, her Educationwise tutor.

“She’s attending all sessions and meeting targets. Working confidently solo. With feedback from Ian Crowe, he has stated Cara is doing really well, receiving positive feedback from the school Cara works in and her organisation.”

Ryan’s nomination statement highlighted that Cara’s success is a testament to the fact that anyone can excel in an apprenticeship, regardless of their background or challenges.

“Ian and I have discussed how impressed we are with Cara’s progress. When we reflect on how she started her apprenticeship and the possibility that she could have been taken off it, it’s amazing to see how far she has come,” the statement read.

Despite facing initial difficulties, Cara has demonstrated remarkable growth and is now producing high-quality work with ease. Congratulations to Cara for her outstanding achievement and for setting a great example for others in the field of apprenticeships!

Congratulations to Cara Ellis on her well-deserved award and for being a shining example of apprenticeship success!

If you’re a learner considering your next step or an employer looking for a skilled workforce, Cara’s story is proof of the value of apprenticeships.

For learners, Cara’s advice is to explore your passion and consider the unique opportunities that an apprenticeship can offer.

For employers, Cara’s success shows that anyone can thrive in an apprenticeship, regardless of their background or challenges they may face.


Take the first step towards your apprenticeship journey today and explore the options available to you.

Who knows, you could be the next Cara, achieving great success in your chosen field through the power of apprenticeships.

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