Young workers lift lid on apprenticeships

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 10 Mar 2017

APPRENTICES have spoken about their experiences working in Scunthorpe.

The 10th annual National Apprenticeship Week finishes today.

The event brings together employers and apprentices from across England to celebrate the success of apprenticeships over the last decade.

North Lindsey College celebrated National Apprenticeship Week with a series of events including managers going back to their roots shadowing apprentices in the workplace, an apprenticeship open event yesterday (Thursday, March 9) and the annual apprenticeship awards ceremony.

The college has also set itself the ambitious target of recruiting 100 apprentices in 100 days which it achieved the previous two years in a row.

Two apprentices who have a lot to thank North Lindsey College for are Jack Tyler and Sasha Jackson, who are working at CMP Barker Ltd.

CMP Barker Ltd offers a wide range of piling solutions including all profiles of steel and uPVC sheet piles, UBP's, H piles, Tubular, Combi, HZ and King Post walls.

The Scunthorpe office also has engineering and fabrication workshops and storage facilities and is the main plant depot.

Jack, 19, and Sasha, 21, both from Scunthorpe, studied fabrication and welding at North Lindsey College and got their apprentices at the Apprentice Training Centre based at the heavy section mill at British Steel.

They also studied Maths, English, ICT and employability skills.

Jack started at CMP Barker in November. He said: "I have been away on site for the last three weeks. The first week, I was in Newcastle and then I went to Hertfordshire. We have taken all our skills out into the working environment."

Sasha, who started a month ago, said: "It has been good. I have just been going through training in the yard and I have done a lot of gas burning."

Both are hoping they will be kept on at CMP Barker Ltd.

James Barker, operations director for the company, said they wanted to "invest" in local lads in preparation for work on the Lincolnshire Lakes project, which the company is hoping to get.

This would see CMP Barker Ltd provide 1.8m of steel sheet piling in the first phase of the project.

A decision is expected to be made in the near future.

Sharron Eskesen, business development at North Lindsey College, said: "There is a huge rise in apprenticeships. North Lindsey College had 329 in November 2013 and that rose to 900 by the end of 2016."

North Lincolnshire Council is also celebrating National Apprenticeship Week.

Council officers attended North Lindsey's event yesterday (Thursday, March 9) to speak with students.

They took details of any interested students and they will be the first to hear about our next apprenticeship opportunities as they become available.

The local authority currently has one apprenticeship available - Apprentice Business Engagement Assistant. The closing date is March 17.

North Lincolnshire Council has successfully supported over 110 apprentices.

Adam Muftah, who works at the Action Station on Cole Street, completed an eight-week work placement with the Procurement team within the council.

He said: "I was told about the upcoming apprenticeship cohort that was due to start in September 2015. Having looked through the different apprenticeships available I decided to apply for the role as the Action Station Assistant as it was similar to a work placement I had done at the Job Centre which I enjoyed. Following my application I was interviewed and was offered the job.

"As an apprentice, no day was the same. I was allowed to work freely and gain experience in all aspects of both an office job and customer service job.

"After 10 months into my apprenticeship, I was supported in applying for an admin job at the Action Station through the redeployment process. During my application I was supported by my manager and then was interviewed by her and one of my line managers."

Jack Ellerton, Young Person's Apprentice, said: "Being an apprentice gave me a sense of achievement and accomplishment. I was taught how to undertake tasks I had never done before and how to use different software.

"Completing an apprenticeship has enabled me to secure another role within the local authority. This role has opened up new opportunities for me and has helped develop my skills to undertake new challenges."

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