I started my Cardiff Award this week (Monday 3rd June), and although I thought at first that it seemed a bit early to be having an induction, I soon realised that a few months was definitely needed to get my head around the whole thing. To be honest, I didn’t have a great understanding of the Award when I applied. I just thought, “why not?”.
So, after a two and a half hour drive down to Cardiff (made longer by the fact I’d got lost, despite making the same journey countless times before), I arrived at the induction. We were greeted by a pack of information, which I thumbed through before the presentation started; the more I read, the more I thought “oh God, what have I let myself in for?”.
BUT after Kath’s wonderful presentation, everything didn’t seem to be quite as scary as before. Now, I’m not saying I came away from the induction full of confidence, thinking the Award would be easy and I’d have no trouble fitting it in with my studies. The Award is hard. There are so many parts to complete but after the induction I felt like it would all be worth it.
I loved the emphasis on developing your skills, and being able to present these skills to an employer with evidence. To be able to go into an interview and say “I know how to work in a team, and this can be demonstrated with x, y and z” will be so valuable. And, although the psychometric tests sound like the least fun part of the Award, I appreciate why they’re included. Having applied for some summer internships over Christmas (and not got any offers), I can see why they emphasise numeracy, considering that each application included a maths test.
The reason why the inductions are being held in June became abundantly clear after hearing about the amount of hours we would have to put in. As well as the 70 hours we needed to accumulate through activities, there were workshops, revision and events. Fitting all of that in before April is a mammoth task, and this way we get to accumulate some hours before university even starts back again! Although I could easily get my 70 hours of activities over the summer as I am working at a summer camp, we were advised that we needed to be able to demonstrate skill learning from these hours, so I’m going to make sure I participate in everything possible so I have as much to draw on as possible!
In all, I’m actually looking forward to getting started on the Award, and fingers crossed, I’ll pass!