A TEENAGER is starting the New Year with a bright future in the printing industry after swapping college for an apprenticeship.

Tyler Cleveley, from Worcester, has just finished a 12-month training programme with Malvern-based Printed Banners and Signs Ltd.

Over the last year, the 19-year-old has been honing his skills in all aspects of design and print from putting together artwork using the latest software packages, to preparing files for print, operating digital and flatbed printers and working with a range of other media.

As well as 12 months experience in the industry with the Spring Lane South-based company, Mr Cleveley has also gained a Level 3 City and Guilds Diploma in ICT Professional Competence, equivalent to A-Levels.

He impressed so much during his training programme that he has now been offered a permanent position with the company when his apprenticeship ends in February.

He said: “I quickly realised whilst at college that I much preferred the practical side rather than the theory. Apprenticeships really appealed to me because I can gain qualifications and hands-on experience doing what I enjoy and get paid for it.”

Company director Alice Fox said: “We have used apprentices before, as we find them an ideal way of training staff so they match the exact requirements of the business.

“Tyler has brought lots of energy and enthusiasm with him which is crucial in the fast-paced environment that we work in. He is an extremely quick learner, his confidence is growing by the day and we feel we would now be lost without him.”

The company received a £1,000 grant from Malvern Hills District Council to help pay the costs of training Mr Cleveley.

Council leader David Chambers said: “Tyler’s story proves there is more than one way to secure yourself a bright future.

“Apprenticeships offer advantages to both employers and people looking to start their career.”