NORTHUMBERLAND Golf Club has helped Christopher McGuire start a career by taking him on as an apprentice greenkeeper.
The club’s greenkeeper recently retired, leaving manager Paul O’Connor looking to recruit a replacement and he turned to Newcastle College to help find him an appropriate student looking for a career in horticulture.
O’Connor said: “A greenkeeper is not the most common of occupations, so I thought finding a replacement might be quite difficult. I was also keen to have the opportunity to train someone to do the job in a really specific way.
“Maintaining the high standard of the course is essential to the club’s reputation, so the additional training element that apprenticeships offer made going down this recruitment route a good option for us.
“I contacted Newcastle College’s free apprentice recruitment and matching service and they sent me Christopher’s details. Being recommended someone who was really interested in both the horticultural and golf aspects was invaluable and made the recruitment processes so much easier.”
Former Newcastle College student McGuire, 20, was keen to secure an apprenticeship with the club which would enable him to combine his interests in a job which also enabled him to gain a recognised qualification.
He said: “It really is my ideal job. I love everything about it. I get to work at the golf course and learn from an experienced team as well as going to college to enhance the training I receive from Paul.
“My goal when I complete the apprenticeship is to get a full-time job. I think having this kind of specialist on the job training and qualification behind me can only help me to achieve that.”
Jim Hubbard, Director of the School of Applied Science and Technology said: “More and more organisations are choosing apprenticeships as a way of developing employees with specialist skills.
“Christopher already had a keen interest in horticulture but needed an opportunity to gain experience and training to help him achieve his career ambitions. Through the apprenticeship scheme he has found his dream job and is developing valuable skills which are essential to his employment.”