SAC Chloe Owen is an intelligence analyst currently serving on 3(F) Squadron at RAF Coningsby. She was among the winners at the 2020 RAF National Apprenticeship Awards
Why was the offer of an apprenticeship important to you when you joined the RAF?
I only left education with GCSEs due to an indecisive mind on the career I wanted to pursue. When I found out that the trade I wanted to pursue in the RAF was offered as an apprenticeship, it reinforced my decision that it was the right choice. Everything happens for a reason.
What does the award mean to you and your family?
This award means more to me than I ever thought it would. As I left school without A-levels or a diploma, I doubted myself a lot and wasn’t sure I would get anywhere in life. I constantly mocked my own intelligence and didn’t think I was good enough. To my family it’s more than just an achievement, it means success. It means that for all those years they told me I’m better than I give myself credit for, they were completely right. They are bursting with pride, as am I.
What has been the most challenging thing about completing an RAF apprenticeship?
The most challenging part about completing the RAF apprenticeship was finding the time to complete it all, while maintaining the Flight Battle Rhythm.
What would you say to young people considering doing an RAF apprenticeship?
Do it! It’s a free qualification, why wouldn’t you go for it? Regardless of the fact you have A-levels, diplomas, or neither, an RAF apprenticeship can open a variety of doors further down the line and it also eases you into your chosen trade.
What are your long-term aspirations for your career in the RAF?
Once I have completed several deployments abroad, I have two main aspirations that I would like to achieve during my RAF career. First, I would like to work with the Special Operations Mission Team at RAF Wyton in order to support domestic crime prevention. Secondly, I would like to work within the field of human intelligence, ideally on Op Sampson. Later in life I’d like to work with the National Crime Agency to combat human-trafficking.
The RAF has been producing apprentices for 100 years. What does it mean to you to be part of this 100-year history?
Above all, it feels good to think that I have made a positive contribution to the RAF’s history. Things could have worked out differently if I had let my self-doubt take over. The RAF changed that.
The RAF has 23 different apprenticeships available. To find yours, search ‘RAF Apprenticeships’