Simon

Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) Apprentice Graduate

Guest blogger for FCO Careers

Part of FCO Apprenticeship Schemes

5th February 2020 United Kingdom

Simon: a day in the life of a Foreign Office apprentice

Simon is a Level 3 Business Administration Apprentice graduate. After completing his apprenticeship, he now works in a geographical team at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO).

My typical day at the Foreign Office

I work in a geographical department that is responsible for managing the UK’s relationships with 3 European countries. My role is split into 3 parts:

  1. Acting as a Personal Assistant to the head of department
  2. Providing business administration support for the department
  3. Also, providing some policy support across the department

This makes my work really varied and allows me to focus my development on areas I find particularly stimulating.  I’ve worked on some really interesting projects, for example I now lead on liaising with our overseas posts and coordinating replies that help colleagues to make export licensing decisions.

Why I chose to apply for a FCO apprenticeship…

I’ve always wanted to work for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and I was surprised to see the FCO offering apprenticeships. When I saw the opportunity I had to grab it! It struck me as a great opportunity to join the organisation I want to build a career in.

Working for the FCO in 3 words

Relevant, engaging, fascinating.

My biggest achievement so far

This has to be the role I played in the visit of a European President to the UK in 2018. This involved working across the FCO, liaising with other government departments and building new relationships with staff at the foreign country’s Embassy in London. As part of my involvement I met the Foreign Secretary and attended a lunch with the President!

The top 3 skills I’d recommend:

  • Willingness to learn and to take opportunities
  • Flexibility
  • Resilience

Find out more about apprenticeships in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and what we did to celebrate National Apprenticeship Week in 2020.

We advertise apprenticeship opportunities on Civil Service Jobs as and when they arise.

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