A Chat with Non Owen

Apprentice of the Month, September 2022

Non Owen is from Botwnnog in Pen Llyn and had her education in Pont y Gof primary School and then at Botwnnog High School. Non is a classroom assistant at Ysgol Hafod Lon in Penrhyndeudraeth, who is also an ‘Activity Leadership’ Sports Apprentice with the Urdd.

Why did you decide to take a Sports Apprenticeship with the Urdd?

I have worked at Hafod Lon School in Penrhyndeudraeth for three years now, and it’s a school for children with special needs. I had never put my name down to do any kind of apprenticeship or course, so when this opportunity came, it was the right time and in a subject that’s of interest to me so I went for it.

What do you enjoy most about your apprenticeship?

I enjoy every aspect of my job, every day is not the same and who knows what kind of challenges face me daily, but it’s safe to say that I like a challenge. This apprenticeship has had a positive effect on my work from day to day because I am more prepared to go and plan lessons, and I am more prepared to share my opinion and share any ideas that I have.

How important is it to do your apprenticeship through the medium of Welsh?

I really enjoy talking, and speaking Welsh is very important to me. I don’t speak much Welsh at school because most children I work with tend to speak English, but I will always try to speak Welsh with the children as it’s important to me that children have two languages.

What are your interests outside of work?

I am a sociable person and love to socialise with family and friends. I also enjoy going for walks and taking my dog for walks.

In which way does completing an apprenticeship effect on your personal development?

I feel more confident at the classroom, and I feel that the apprenticeship has put things into a different perspective for me, for example being more aware of children’s needs, being aware of the importance of adjusting work to reccognise children’s needs and make sure that the children get the most out of different activities.

What are you hoping to do after completing the apprenticeship?

I hope that after completing the apprenticeship, doors will open for me, an example of this is perhaps going ahead to do different courses as I have discovered confidence within me that I wasn’t aware of before. Through doing this apprenticeship it has made me realise that I have the potential to do anything I want when I put my mind to it.  

Briefly describe your duties.

I am a classroom assistant, so I help children reach their full potential and help the teacher to do her daily tasks.

Describe your experience of doing an apprenticeship with the Urdd in 3 words!

Memorable, Happy, New experience

Would you like to add something about your story? How have you gotten to where you are now? What was/is your biggest challenge? 

I left school at 16, and went on to Meirion Dwyfor College, then went ton to look for work straight away. University life didn’t appeal to me, and it’s safe to say that my period at college was challenging as everyone was moving on with their lives by going to university, and I wasn’t going anywhere, so I decided to go and look for work at a school, and that’s the best thing I’ve ever done. I am so happy to be where I am today, and I am always grateful for my family and friends because without them, I wouldn’t be the person that I am today, happy and confident. I still make mistakes, but these are what makes me a better person and worker, and I’m happy with how things are going for me.