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Inspiring apprentice overcomes barriers to thrive

25 Mar 2024

We want to celebrate the journey of an outstanding apprentice who hasn't taken the conventional route to a career but is now achieving incredible things.

At 14, Max Fleming was excluded from school, during this time he was struggling with undiagnosed ADHD, autism and dyslexia without the support he needed from his school.

He was referred to alternative provision where he successfully completed level 1 functional skills in English and maths and courses in bricklaying and joinery. This sparked his interest in a career in the industry and he began supporting his dad with various joinery tasks to further enhance his skills.

With his newfound passion, Max came to the Growth Company to find an apprenticeship and was matched with a vacancy at Urmston-based construction company ConvertMy, who offer a variety of building services.

Max started his level 2 apprenticeship in Carpentry and Joinery in May 2023 and now with the support he needs and the opportunity to do work he loves, he is thriving.

We were joined by Max and his employer Mike Marsden, Director of ConvertMy, to find out how he has been getting on with his apprenticeship and hear about some of the projects he has worked on.

Upon meeting Max, his passion for his work was immediately evident. His beaming smile was infectious as he shared photos of the projects he has been working on and reminisced with Mike about some of his proudest achievements so far.

Max said: “I look at myself now and then look back to a few years ago and I can see how far I’ve come. Having the right people around to support me, not just at work but also my tutors, has really helped. My tutor Phil always checks in to see if there is anything I need and if there is anything I need to work on, his support really helps me.

“I want to keep learning as much as I can and gaining new skills and certifications. I learn better when I’m able to be hands-on with something practical and learning as I go which is what makes an apprenticeship great for me, and getting paid is a bonus.”

Mike said: “I was introduced to Max in May and from his trial day I knew that he was something special and would make a great addition to our team. He’s always the first one to ask what needs to be done when we start a new project and is always looking to learn more and take on new challenges, I know that I can trust him to get on with the work and complete everything to a high standard. He impresses me and the rest of our team every day and I always get fantastic feedback from our customers.

“The support the Growth Company gives to both Max as a learner and us as an employer is fantastic. Since joining us less than a year ago I've seen him grow both personally and professionally and I’m so proud that we can support him.”

Phil Henniker, Max’s Skills Development Tutor, said: “Max in his time as an apprentice with me and at the SkillsCentre has been very productive and he has an excellent aptitude to his programme. I have been on site and his mentors speak very highly of him and this is evident from witnessing this in the workplace for myself. Max has regular 1-1 time with me in the SkillCentre to complete the paperwork that is required for his programme as this is something that he can struggle with at times. Max has always treated me with nothing, but respect and he is eager to learn and complete his apprenticeship in a timely manner. Max is a model student and I have no doubt that he will achieve his goals in life.”

We are delighted to have had the pleasure in meeting Max and hearing how he is now excelling in his role thanks to the support he needed.

At the Growth Company, supporting our learners is at the heart of what we do. To support each learner to thrive, we have dedicated support teams based in all our training centres as well as 1:1 support available to all learners.

Find out more about apprenticeships in Construction and the support available from the Growth Company: