The first student to complete all three levels of a Bachelor’s degree at Leeds Beckett University as a degree apprentice is celebrating their graduation this month at the University’s Headingley Campus.

Twenty-two-year-old Robert Halliwell, from Bradford, was one of the first students to start a degree apprenticeship at Leeds Beckett University when the programmes launched in 2017. Alongside his full-time job as a capacity and monitoring analyst at Yorkshire Building Society, Robert has completed a BSc (Hons) degree in Digital and Technology Solutions, funded by the Society.

Whilst other degree apprenticeship students have completed Masters’ degrees and Bachelor’s top-up degrees, Robert is the first student to complete the full three levels of a Bachelor’s degree as a degree apprentice.

Robert said:

For me, the main attraction of a degree apprenticeship was the opportunity to gain work experience whilst studying for a degree. Leeds Beckett University was one of my initial choices before discovering the degree apprenticeship programme, so I was pleased to hear that they were offering the Digital and Technology Solutions course.

The combination of studying and working in this way has been perfect - having the ability to apply what you learn in a real work scenario really helps when studying for exams, assessments or writing reports.

As a capacity and monitoring analyst for Yorkshire Building Society, Robert’s job involves ensuring all online services are both available and performing optimally for customers and colleagues.

He explained:

I have been able to apply all the modules from the course in my everyday work – providing new ways of working and resolving technical problems - for example automating time consuming daily tasks within my area. All of which have been greatly appreciated.

Being a degree apprenticeship student is no different from being a full-time student – I could use all the facilities, and get involved with societies and clubs. I competed in the Cyber Crime Cup 2019 at the Etihad Stadium, where our LBU team came fourth in the UK!

I would describe the degree apprenticeship as the ideal start to a career or career change. I would highly recommend the degree apprenticeship to anyone - the support from both Yorkshire Building Society and Leeds Beckett University has been amazing throughout.


All information correct at time of publication.