We had a chat with Suzanna May Blakeley-Monk, the Learner of the Month for January!
The SPARKS Learner of the Month award celebrates students and apprentices who are passionate about the future of the electrical industry, going above and beyond in their apprenticeships to set the standards of the industry.
SPARKS has launched the award to recognise the efforts that students and apprentices have put into learning the trade.
Suzanna was nominated by her dad and employer, Nick Blakeley, and was chosen as the Learner of the Month after a week of voting and testimonials on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
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Our second nominee for the January SPARKS Learner of the Month sponsored by @WAGOLimited is Suzanna May Blakeley-Monk! If you think Suzanna should win the Splicing Connector Set, tell us why in the comments! Nominations close 4pm Monday 10th Feb. #apprentices #naw2020 #wagolimited #SPARKSLOTM
The award was sponsored by WAGO, who sent Suzanna a Splicing Connector Kit.
Our runners-up were James Gaskell from Farnborough College of Technology and Bailey Oates from Kirklees College – who both impressed WAGO so much that they still received prizes.
Suzanna May, 26, was nominated for the following reason: “What can you say? As a dad and employer, she is a great woman working in the trade, someone that works hard – not only at work but for charities.
“Suzy, who is dyslexic, has had to work very hard and has struggled with being put down in a ‘man’s trade’, but carries on.
“Even with disappointments with her early exams she bounces back, and gets the grade. Suzy smashed her AM2 with a stunning 97.6% result and 75% in her regulations. She is a credit to women and an asset to the industry!”
SPARKS Magazine: Congratulations Suzanna! How does it feel to be the SPARKS Learner of the Month?
Suzanna May Blakeley-Monk: It feels strange – a bit like a dream to be honest. I can’t really believe it!
SPARKS: How long have you been in the industry?
SBM: I have worked for my dad since I was 14. I work with him four days a week. I also attended Llandrillo College for my technical training.
SPARKS: What made you want to get into the industry?
SBM: I have always been fascinated by electricity. It was only when I went to university to study Drama that I got into the technical side of it. When I looked at jobs at the end of my course I needed the electrical installation qualification to get the job. So I went as an apprentice with dad.
SPARKS: What do you love most about it?
SBM: Making customers happy when we’ve completed a job.
SPARKS: What is your day-to-day role?
SBM: I assist Nick on jobs: installing new consumer units or new accessories.
SPARKS: What would you like to achieve in your career?
SBM: I would like to continue working with dad but would like to work on theatre electrics.
SPARKS: What inspires you the most?
SBM: My dad has always inspired me in electrics. But what also inspires me is the thought that one day I will be able to inspire other girls to become electricians.
SPARKS: What’s your favourite social media platform?
SBM: Facebook or Instagram (mainly because I run my blog about being a female electrician on them).
SPARKS: What’s your favourite job to do?
SBM: Hmm… tough question. Probably consumer unit upgrades. Making it safer for the customer.
SPARKS: What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given in your apprenticeship?
SBM: Never give up. No matter how tough it gets or what people say to you to try bring you down. Keep at it. Stay strong and you can prove everyone wrong.