Sonya sets her sights on career thanks to apprenticeship

Monday 6th February 2023

Sonya sets her sights on career thanks to apprenticeship

It takes commitment and hard work to move to a different country and start a new career but thanks to apprenticeship opportunities supported by Queen Victoria Hospital (QVH), Sonya Chavdarova has done just that.

The theme of National Apprenticeship Week (6-13 February) is amazing apprenticeships and Sonya Chavdarova, recently promoted to Senior Ophthalmic Technician in the hospital’s corneoplastic (eye) department, wants to say thank you for the amazing opportunities the apprenticeship scheme has given her.

After moving to the UK from Bulgaria with her husband and young son, Sonya joined QVH in 2014, completing a Level 3 Senior Health Care Assistant apprenticeship in 2018. Determined to learn, Sonya started her Level 4 Health Care Science in Ophthalmology apprenticeship in January 2020, studying through the Covid pandemic, completing last year.

Through apprenticeships, Queen Victoria Hospital offers its staff the opportunity to achieve a qualification whilst earning a salary. They enable hardworking staff to gain new skills through studying and hands-on experience, progress in their career and most importantly, support the hospital in caring for its patients. Apprenticeships are available from Level 2 right through to Level 7 (Masters).

Sonya says: “my colleagues have always encouraged me, guided me and believed in me. During the pandemic there was a time that I did not believe that I could do it but the support I received from everyone kept me going. I really did not want to disappoint anyone by quitting.”

With a recent promotion under her belt, Sonya is setting her sights on developing further. Sonya continues: “apprenticeships helped me to be more confident and competent in what I do and allow me to continue working with the best team ever.”

Lawrence Anderson, interim director of workforce and organisational development, at Queen Victoria Hospital, said: “We are delighted to be able to support staff right across our organisation to start or further their career through apprenticeship opportunities. They enable us as a hospital to attract and train hardworking, committed individuals who enjoy learning and earning at the same time, whilst providing the best possible care for our patients.”

Find out more about apprenticeships at Queen Victoria Hospital here or on the national apprenticeship website.

For more information, please email the QVH Press Office at