Haddon Training learner Tanisha McCormack is a Level 3 Senior Equine Groom apprentice for international event rider Willa Newton.

On National Apprenticeship Week 2020 we caught up with her to find out why she loves being an apprentice with Willa.

Tell us a little bit about your job
I work for Willa Newton at Willa Newton Eventing and have been there for just under three years.

What apprenticeship are you currently enrolled on?
I’m currently working towards a Level 3 Senior Equine Groom apprenticeship after completing a Level 2 Horse Care apprenticeship with Haddon Training.

What inspired you to become an apprentice?
After I finished my GCSE’s I started to work at Willa’s. I enjoyed the experience of working at a top event yard and then in the September the opportunity came up for me to do an apprenticeship, which was a great way to gain qualifications and work experience at the same time.

How do you find the paperwork side of your apprenticeship?
I find the paperwork bit of the apprenticeship manageable. Cat who is my Trainer-Coach from Haddon is a great support and always on hand if I have any queries. I look forward to her monthly visits as she always makes me feel very at ease when we are discussing the work I’ve been doing since the previous visit.

The team at Willa’s are brilliant. They have always made me very comfortable about asking questions if I’m not sure about something or need something explaining more in-depth, and also being shown new skills.

What has been the highlight so far?
My personal highlight is going to Belton Horse Trials which was my favourite event as it’s local and I use to go with my family. I never thought I would be on the other side grooming for a competitor.

Definitely a team highlight since I’ve been working at Willa’s was the year Willa came 8th at the Burghley Horse Trials on Chance Remark and Janet (our Head Girl) won the Horse Care Grooms Award there. Everyone was on a real high at the yard and it was nice to see everyone’s hard work rewarded.

What are your hopes for the future?
My hopes for the future are continuing to do the job I enjoy whilst gaining more knowledge and experience with horses.

You were recently runner-up in the Haddon Training British Grooms Awards, for the Apprentice of the Year award. How did you feel about being nominated and being so highly commended for your work?
It was lovely to be nominated and recognised but it did come as a shock, I was so genuinely surprised that I had been entered and couldn’t believe I had come runner-up in the country!

I would just like to thank everyone at Willa’s, Haddon Training and everyone at home for all your help and support. Not forgetting Willa for giving me this opportunity!

What advice do you have for other people considering an apprenticeship?
Anyone thinking of doing an apprenticeship definitely should do it!

It was the best thing I ever did, you get to work and get life experience all while doing an apprenticeship; you wouldn’t get this from just a course.

If you’d like to find out more about becoming a Haddon Training learner then please give us a call on 01672 519977 or send us an email to enquiries@haddontraining.co.uk.