Steven is a Client Systems Engineer with LJMU’s Information Technology Services. He started his career in Professional Services as an apprentice before eventually gaining a degree - the first person in his immediate family to do so. With a full circle view of how the university works, Steven embodies our student focussed approach.
He features in our ‘Humans of LJMU’ series in collaboration with the ‘Humans of Liverpool’ social media account, sharing the stories of the people who make our city, communities and university the vibrant, inclusive place it is in celebration of our bicentenary year.
In his interview he reflects on his time working at LJMU, from joining as an apprentice to achieving his degree and to the future in which he wants to help others progress in their own careers.
“I’d like to be able to guide other people through their careers now and support them the way that others have supported me. Every person that I’ve worked with has genuinely helped me in one way or another.”
– Steven Corlett
Steven’s ‘Humans of LJMU’ interview
“When I left school, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. School was okay, I had a good group of friends, but I struggled to get my head down and put my mind to it. I left with the bare minimum qualifications. They were pushing me to go to college, but I just wanted to work and earn money. After working in a pet shop, I was accepted for an IT apprenticeship at LJMU in the Faculty of Health.
“Earlier on in my time at the university, I’d volunteer at the graduation ceremonies and imposter syndrome would kick in. It seemed like something that wasn’t for me. I’ve always struggled with imposter syndrome. But that’s probably been beneficial because it’s made me work harder. That fear that I’m not good enough. I want to prove that I am. Eventually, I started to think, I hope I’m on that stage one day getting my degree.
“Professional development has always been a focus in my time here. After numerous courses and NVQs, I was offered a Degree Apprenticeship in Digital Technologies. That made me the first person in my immediate family to go to university. I studied part-time for four years and I managed to achieve a first in my degree. My graduation was a really proud day for me and my family. But it was quite anti-climactic. All the hard work you put in for four years and you can’t believe it’s finally done. I’ve got it now; what do I do next? That’s my main thought now, what’s the next goal?
“I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon in terms of personal development. That’s the thing about IT, you can never stop, never stand still. Because it’s always evolving. Now that I’ve graduated myself, it’s benefited me in my perspective of my work and how the place operates, as I can now see things from a student’s point of view. I always say to people - no question is a stupid question - just ask. Because I’ve been in a position of worrying about asking in case people think I don’t know what I’m talking about. I want to be as approachable as I can be. I’d like to be able to guide other people through their careers now and support them the way that others have supported me. Every person that I’ve worked with has genuinely helped me in one way or another.”