What is your current role?
I am currently on a Level 3 Craft Machinist Apprenticeship, in my third year at the Yeovil site.
Why did you decide to take on an apprenticeship?
I started studying engineering in secondary school from year 9 at a local college. This spurred me on to complete a BTEC manufacturing course at the same college, as I knew I wanted to get into that type of industry. However, I wanted to take the next big leap and apply for a specific machining craft apprentice. I was naturally drawn to Leonardo as I was excited to work on the different components that make up the gears and housings in every helicopter, but also allowing me to gain a qualification in the process.
What areas of the business have you worked in since joining?
I had little experience working as a machinist before coming to Leonardo Helicopters but I was surprised by the large variation in machines and the types of specialist processes that are done on site. I have had the chance to experience the different types of machining, ranging from general turning, to gear cutting and spiral bevel grind. This has given me a great understanding of the processes that run with each component and the complete life cycle of production.
What has been your greatest achievement at Leonardo?
Some of my favourite experiences so far have been outside of my day job, such as supporting the company’s STEM engagement with local schools or helping with large corporate events and planning different socials with work. This has provided me the opportunities to build my confidence in a professional setting and given me skills in working with others and planning in a team.
What are your aspirations for the future?
After completing my apprenticeship, I plan to work through the ranks in our Transmissions department to gain more experience and knowledge about engineering. I would also like to study further by going into planning or management and provide opportunities to give back to the company.
Would you recommend an apprenticeship, and why?
I cannot recommend an apprenticeship highly enough; it’s a perfect way to gain valuable working experience in an ever relevant industry. It also equips you with traversable skills in communication and organisation that can not only help your career, but positively affect your life. Although applying may be scary, the recruitment team and all staff I have come across in my three years at Leonardo have been extremely friendly and accepting, and I would recommend applying.