Ryan had a successful 11-year career as a professional cricketer for Durham County Cricket Club before retraining as an Independent Mortgage Advisor. Now he’s on the next stage of his varied career journey with us.
He has joined the Solomons apprenticeship programme as an Assistant Quantity Surveyor and will be based at our recently opened offices at Lambton Park near Chester-Le-Street as part of the North East team.
How have you found it so far?
I’ve really enjoyed it so far. Speaking to people here and getting to know the kind of projects Solomons is involved in has just reinforced what I’d hoped it would be. Now the hard work begins!
Tell us more about what you did before joining the apprenticeship programme?
I was doing a degree in Sports Science at the University of Sunderland when I signed a pro contract with Durham. The degree kind of got put on the shelf as I was playing professionally and was there for 11 years. After that I became an Independent Mortgage Advisor on a self-employed basis. So, from professional sport to financial services!
Why Quantity Surveying?
I thought about Quantity Surveying at the back end of my cricketing career, but it felt like that was lost because I hadn’t studied it at university all those years ago. I looked at it again this year and how I could get my foot in the door in either Quantity Surveying or construction project management. I was refreshing the jobs website Indeed all the time looking for Junior Quantity Surveyor and Quantity Surveyor roles, and generic search terms to do with construction. Then the advert from Solomons popped up.
The job advert, the way it was worded, the feeling you got from it was completely different from others I’d seen. It had a quirky element that drew you in. With it being a graduate conversion scheme that looks at your skills and personality and how you can transfer them, it ticked every box. It was great to see that the decisions I made earlier in my life and choice of degree topic wouldn’t count against me. It offered pretty much everything I needed to get into the industry. And I wanted the security of an employed role, where there was a structure in place and help at hand. I must have applied about an hour after it had gone live!
Now you’ve started the apprenticeship, where do you think you’ll get, do you have any targets?
I don’t want to look too far down the line. I’ve had a lot of conversations with people here about whether they thought they’d be doing what they’re doing now. Pretty much all have them have said no because of how rapidly things can change. I’m going to take it in stages, gain the competencies, pass the exams, break it down into little successes. The aim is to get chartered status after three years. I’m very open minded in where this will take me.
What do you do in your spare time?
I play recreational cricket still. It’s literally next door to the Lambton Park office where I’ll be based. And that’s really close to where I live. It’s sounds cliché, but it feels like it was meant to be! Everything has fallen nicely into place.