An apprentice from Specsavers in Batley is starting an exciting career in optics thanks to an apprenticeship programme.

Amarah Dukandar

Amarah Dukandar is currently enrolled in the Specsavers apprenticeship programme and, during National Apprenticeship Week (Monday 5 – 9 March), encouraged others to get involved in the scheme. More than 270 people are currently enrolled on the Specsavers apprenticeship programme.

After first starting out at college, Amarah found her study subjects uninteresting. When researching alternate study routes, she found the opportunity to work as an apprentice at her local Specsavers store.

Amarah said: ‘I’m a real people person, so working with the public seemed a natural fit for me. I’ve been with the Batley team for eight months now, and I’m hoping to graduate to the position of Optical Assistant at the end of June. I’m also doing some training in health and safety so I should graduate with multiple qualifications.’

A word from the store director

Store director Paul Smith said: ‘Apprenticeships are a great way to unlock the potential of young people or those looking for a career change and provide a way for them to embark on successful and fulfilling careers.

‘The Specsavers scheme offers learners an excellent opportunity to enter the world of work in a safe and structured way, providing them with a real job, great training and qualifications.’

About the apprenticeship scheme

Specsavers’ one-year apprenticeship is open to anyone over the age of 16 and requires no previous optical experience. Apprentices can choose to work as an optical assistant or take on roles in customer service or retail. Specsavers is also trialling an optical technician apprenticeship for those interested in working in a lab.

Those that complete the apprenticeship will become fully qualified in those roles with the chance of full time employment at Specsavers.

Each course will include monthly assessor visits, observations, online learning and courses. Apprentices also learn on the job, working in-store alongside qualified professionals and becoming part of the team.

The apprenticeships scheme has been running for just over three years and 90% of the apprentices take on permanent positions within the company, with 85% undertaking further training.

All Batley store information