The Student Room Group

Thinking of quitting my apprenticeship

My name is Charlotte.
I'm currently doing a degree apprenticeship in civil engineering working as a site engineer on a construction site.
I've been working here for 2 years but I feel this isn't right for me. There's nothing I struggle with particularly, infant I've been told I'm very competent at my job.
But I can't get over this feeling of loneliness. I am the only girl on site, the youngest person by far, I know everyone but no one really talks to me. And when you're working 55 hours a week, not having anyone to talk to feels very isolating.

I'm now stuck with this decision of what do I do next.
I'm 21, I feel like I'm beyond the point of going back in to full time education again, especially now I've been earning and have things to pay for like a car and rent ect. But I do enjoy studying and want to make some friends my own age.
If I start looking for a different job/apprenticeship, I wouldn't even know where to look.
Or am I just over reacting and feeling alone at work is perfectly normal.

Feeling a bit lost at the moment. Any advice would be welcome.
Original post by Charlotte.AP
My name is Charlotte.
I'm currently doing a degree apprenticeship in civil engineering working as a site engineer on a construction site.
I've been working here for 2 years but I feel this isn't right for me. There's nothing I struggle with particularly, infant I've been told I'm very competent at my job.
But I can't get over this feeling of loneliness. I am the only girl on site, the youngest person by far, I know everyone but no one really talks to me. And when you're working 55 hours a week, not having anyone to talk to feels very isolating.
I'm now stuck with this decision of what do I do next.
I'm 21, I feel like I'm beyond the point of going back in to full time education again, especially now I've been earning and have things to pay for like a car and rent ect. But I do enjoy studying and want to make some friends my own age.
If I start looking for a different job/apprenticeship, I wouldn't even know where to look.
Or am I just over reacting and feeling alone at work is perfectly normal.
Feeling a bit lost at the moment. Any advice would be welcome.

Hi Charlotte - I think feeling alone sometimes at work is totally normal. I know I have done in the past. Currently, I work in nursing (although I’m going back to my previous job shortly, as I never realised how much I enjoyed it until I started nursing) and previously worked in primary school teaching - both very heavily female dominated. In fact I was the only male employee at the primary school other than the caretaker. Sometimes, it gets very boring and you feel like you have nothing in common to discuss. On the other hand, I often find that the distance can be good - I don’t feel any pressure to take part in or attend events my colleagues do outside of work together that I have zero interest in, purely on the basis that everyone at work or from my team is going!

Firstly, do you enjoy your job? If you do then there is a lot to be said to be able to get up and go out to do something you enjoy for work daily. A lot of people can’t say that.

Secondly, how many years is your degree apprenticeship? Finishing it and graduating with zero student debt is a fantastic position to be in. Plus, you’ll be in a position to go for numerous positions that graduates can go for e.g. the Civil Service graduate schemes, local government etc. that often require you to have a degree, but not necessarily in a specific subject. Obviously, you’ll also be able to easily move in the construction arena to other roles with another employer in an environment / with people that might suit you better too.

However, I’d never encourage anyone to stay in a job they don’t enjoy - I’m currently in that position and am luckily going back to something I know I enjoy with people I like to work with. It’s a long working life these days, so don’t do something long term that makes you unhappy or you don’t want to get up and do daily. People spend far too much time at work to be miserable there. In my experience as well, those that are miserable at work due to not enjoying it let it impact their work, take it out on everyone they work with and also let it impact their personal life. It just isn’t worth it.

However, don’t feel pressured into making a decision quickly - you’ve got a job (it tends to be easier to get another job when you’re already employed), plenty of time to decide what is best for you and how to go about it. Don’t think you have to know all the answers straight away - I’ve not figured out what my forever career is yet. I’ll probably decide in the day I can retire! All the best in figuring out what to do. I hope you find the right career and place for you - I’m sure you will!

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