It’s September 2016. For Anastasia McGill and Chloe Morgan it’s their first day of sixth form.
Nerves are jangling and they’re both unsure of what lies ahead for the rest of the day, never mind the next two years.
The last few months were a rollercoaster of emotions. Having sat nearly 50 exams between them, Anastasia and Chloe have spent the summer holidays knowing their results determine their next steps in life.
This isn’t the first time that the duo anxiously waited for results in 2016. They were runners up in the 2015 Deloitte TMT Predictions challenge – having developed a Virtual Reality app to provide students from under-privileged areas like themselves and who can’t afford the travel, the opportunity to take a university tour.
While the pair were “gutted” to have not taken home first prize, the experience was memorable. And it set the foundations for a longer-lasting relationship than they had anticipated.
Both have faced economic and social challenges, but their exam results and the TMT Challenge had bolstered their confidence. They were ready to continue their education.
But that confidence was soon shattered on that first day of sixth form. Anastasia discovered her course was cancelled - there hadn’t been enough interest from other students. And Chloe’s experience fell well short of what she had hoped for.
“We felt like failures because we weren’t going to complete our studies” said Anastasia.
“A couple of weeks later, we were invited to attend a school careers fayre where we met people from Deloitte’s Milton Keynes office who were speaking about the apprentice programme."
“We successfully applied and love the fact that we can continue our studies whilst gaining real experience working on the HR Helpdesk.”
Now both 19, Anastasia and Chloe are midway through their apprenticeship programme. Reflecting on the last two years Chloe says, “Our experience has probably been slightly different to other apprentices in the firm as ours is a Customer Services qualification. Working in the Shared Services Organisation we’ve had experiences working in IT, Finance, Training & Knowledge and more recently HR.”
Anastasia’s proud of what she’s achieved so far, “When I look back to two years ago, I remember how I upset I used to get at the prospect of speaking in front of a few classmates. I’ve been able to develop my interpersonal skills and feel proud that I can confidently present to any audience – whether that’s to partners or an assembly full of students.”
They regularly make the time to share their experiences with others who can find themselves in similar situations to theirs.
“We want to show others that it doesn’t matter what your background is – there are opportunities to work for a company like Deloitte. We’re speaking at school career fayres and job shows. We feel that we can connect with students as we’ve seen it from their point of view” said Chloe.
We believe in the importance of equality in the workplace, not just for diversity but for talent. Discover how we’re challenging gender equality, and how you can find your potential with us regardless of your background: http://bit.ly/2oMNpUc