Case Studies | Apprenticeships

Case Studies | Apprenticeships

Michelle Mellor

Then: Kitchen Apprentice

Now: Managing Director, The Cummins Mellor Group


Our own Managing Director Michelle Mellor started her career as an apprentice, back in 1982 when they were known as Youth Training Schemes. The YTS was a government initiative that functioned much the same as the modern apprenticeship – providing on-the-job training for school leavers and setting them up for the world of work.

michelle circle

Michelle has always been passionate about working in the hospitality industry and accepted two six-month placements within kitchens, one in an independent hotel and another as part of a contract catering kitchen for Compass services.

Knowing that it was the industry for her, she was delighted when she applied for and got a job as a full-time sandwich-maker!

“This is where my passion for the industry began,” says Michelle. “I worked with true professionals with the highest standards and knew that I wanted to be a part of the Chef team.”

So while working full-time and picking up what overtime she could, she also attended Catering college two nights a week for three years in order to gain the City & Guilds Chef Qualifications.

Michelle hasn’t looked back since and her career has only gone from strength-to-strength!

Her life now is a far cry from the young woman who left school with 2 O Levels, no confidence, and not a clue what to do with her career, and she has apprenticeships to thank for this. The scheme taught her the value of hard work and being part of a team, and she gained skills that she still utilises every day running a business.

“I am passionate about giving people a chance and encouraging them to be the best they can be,” Michelle tells us. “I was given a fantastic opportunity by Compass Services and have enjoyed a successful career ever since – it all started with an apprenticeship!”

Anya Ryan

Then: Administration Apprentice

Now: Marketing Assistant, Cummins Mellor Chefs Division


After leaving college and completing her A-levels in 2013, Anya knew that University really wasn’t for her.
‘I wasn’t cut out for long essay writing and I really wanted to get my foot on the career ladder and take the next step in my life getting my first real job!
ANYAWhen I got the job at Cummins Mellor I was over the moon, as the atmosphere when I was shown around the office was amazing and I knew I would love every minute of my working day’.

  Anya began working as an Administration Assistant in our Chefs Jobs division, completing paperwork and making phone calls to all the chefs on our system, she began to take on more and more responsibility and began to help out in other departments. This led to Anya taking on the role of a Marketing Assistant in the Chefs Jobs division as she helped out with odd duties for the Marketing team and realised quite quickly that she had a love for it. Anya is now studying her Level 3 Marketing Diploma.

 What did you enjoy the most about being a Cummins Mellor Apprentice?
“The best thing about being an apprentice is learning new things on a daily basis and also improving on my knowledge of how a business works, I’m beginning to think about things in a much more commercial way.”

 Are there any disadvantages to being an Apprentice?
“No, I don’t think there is as I’m always learning and developing my skills.”

 What advice would you give to somebody considering an apprenticeship?
“Definitely go for it! It’s a great way to earn money, learn and work!”