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Samantha Millar


Technology Apprentice


Vodafone Technology Apprenticeship

I am one of the ten Technology Apprentices at Vodafone.  The reason I applied for this job was because I have a passion for Technology and a desire to work for a well known company like Vodafone.  I found out about this apprenticeship through the secondary school I attended, Rosehill College.  The minimum requirement for applying for this apprenticeship was NCEA Level 2, which I had achieved the previous year, and the potential to complete Level 3 NCEA in Mathematics, English and Science/Technology.  The subjects I took were Mathematics, English, Computer Studies, Computer Technology, Geography and Accounting.  I also had a Level 2 Certificate in Computing which was an advantage.  The subject I most enjoyed at school was mathematics, in Year 13 when I went on to study Level 3 and I took both Calculus and Statistics and Modelling.  I really enjoy problem solving which is a good attribute to have when you are interested in a career in the Telecommunications industry.

As part of the apprenticeship program I am studying a National Certificate in Telecommunications Level 3 and on the completion of this I will have the opportunity to complete a National Certificate in Telecommunications Level 4.  I have been lucky to have had the opportunity to attend a First Aid Course as part of the apprenticeship program and complete an ISTQB Software Testing Foundation Course which is known worldwide.

The apprenticeship is a two year program, within the two years I will be spending a year in IT and a year in Networks.  People in IT develop, test and maintain our systems/applications.  Some of the other areas in IT are Architecture, Business Analysis, Business Intelligence, Development, Quality Assurance, Testing and more.  People in Networks are the team who design and operate our network to make sure we are the fastest in New Zealand.  They are also the guys who work at our ‘top secret’ offices throughout New Zealand and they know all about cell sites, 3G, LTE, Ultra Fast Broadband and Rural Broadband.

During the next two years I will be going around the different teams within IT and Networks to see which parts of Technology I have the most interest in and where I think I would like to have a career in.  During this time I will have a lot of opportunities.   The most exciting aspect of my job is the constant new experiences I get to have.  Each area I work in offers me opportunities to continually learn and develop myself as an individual and as a professional.  Below is a list of a few of the awesome things I will be doing as on the job training during my two year apprenticeship:

  • Assisting with installation and maintenance of Information Communication Technology systems and services
  • Diagnose and repair telecommunications wireless networks equipment and services under indirect supervision
  • Apply key concepts and skills, including installing, maintaining and repairing telecommunications networks
  • Participate in team meetings/ coaching, sharing knowledge and experience 

My advice for anyone wanting to work in the Telecommunications industry would be to talk to your careers adviser about any courses coming up that will help you gain practical experience and knowledge.  This will help you to decide whether this is the career path you want to take and if so this will be a big advantage to starting your career.  Above all you’ll have to have the willingness to commit to growing you telecommunications career.