00:00:02 Hi, I’m William L. I work for BT Openreach and I’m a customer service engineer in the Coventry area. As a customer service engineer, I’m responsible for repairing and providing telephone lines to all the houses and businesses in Britain.
00:00:19 When I was at school, I completed my GCSEs, my ten GCSEs and A levels, and I was physics, and maths and science-based really. They were not necessarily the things I enjoyed the most, but for some reason they were the ones I was slightly gifted at. It was only a natural progression to become an engineer really, but it took a little time for me to realise that.
00:00:40 Neither of my parents went to university, so there wasn’t any kind of pressure within my home to go to university; although I knew I was more than capable of it. My mum was a housewife, so it wasn’t a career that I could really consider seriously, and my father was a roofer. I think because of my ability at school I was never going to become a labourer, or a builder, or someone working in a heavily… relying upon their body. Because I didn’t really know what was available to me after my A levels, I couldn’t really rely on my mum or my dad to direct me in that way. I had to kind of find it on my own really.
00:01:20 When I finished my A levels, I spent six months working at McDonalds, saving enough money to go travelling, so I travelled to Japan, and Australia and Thailand. I wanted to see a bit of the world while I was still young, and also I didn’t know what I wanted to be. I think it’s a strange choice to go off to university, and spend all that money, and get into debt, to choose a career that early on that you may never… It may never become useful.
00:01:43 I was there with four friends, and we travelled round the East Coast of Australia and we camped most of the way. Every night was as good as the next, you know. There was never a dull moment with four of your best friends in a foreign country with loads of money. I think it will forever stay with me. I will have been changed by that in more ways than I can ever explain.
00:02:07 When I came back, I decided that education was my thing. I was good at it and it kept me interested, so I did a BTEC National Diploma in music, which was naturally… the thing I wanted to learn was the thing I enjoyed, so music at the time was the thing that I went in for, a two-year course. And I got a lot out of it, but I knew really that it was never going to be a career for me. It was something to pass the time, you know, to keep myself active. Then I worked for about another year in a little off-license while I decided what I wanted to be, and that’s where I met Tom, who told me about the wonders of BT.
00:02:42 I think I’ve done the right thing because now with BT Openreach, as an apprentice, I’m doing a foundation degree in telecoms and business management, so I’ve got that opportunity that I had back then, except now I know what I want to be, so I feel like waiting may have added some extra pressure to my life but I think it was definitely worth it. It was a couple of years. I had fun. I had money. I had less pressure on me in my job roles, but I think it was more than worth it to actually find my way in life.
00:03:15 When I’m not at work, I like to play football. I play for a Sunday League team, so I play kind of three times a week. I play for a Saturday league team, not quite as regularly but I do as well. I like to play squash, I like to play badminton, I’m a big snooker fan, and obviously I like to socialise with my friends. Life would be really boring without your friends.
00:03:35 I’ll probably stay within BT Openreach or within BT. It’s a massive company. They’ve got a hundred thousand people working for them. There’s every job probably you can imagine within the company. As long as I keep my studies to a decent level, I think I’ll be able to choose what I want to do. If I could be anything in the world, if there’s anything I could do, I would love to be in a band and make enough money to travel the world and do that fulltime. That would be great.