Direct Air’s Engineering Apprentice develops furth...

Direct Air’s Engineering Apprentice develops furth...

Direct Air’s Engineering Apprentice develops furth...

Why did you choose to start an apprenticeship?

I decided to start an apprenticeship instead of a different path because I prefer to get stuck in and be working in a hands-on environment, so this was the perfect opportunity! Although I am only part way through my apprenticeship, I know that this was the best route for me to develop my skills and knowledge for my style of learning.

The apprenticeship requires a 50/50 split of workplace on the job training and class-based learning, this keeps me engaged and motivated as I am always doing something different and new.

What does your learning plan for college consist of?

Although I have done some classroom based work at college, MGTS’s facility has allowed me to also be hands on whilst I’m there. One example includes maintaining moving systems, such as conveyer belts, and concluding with a write up to establish how I overcame obstacles during the practical session.

Whilst in the classroom, I’ve also had the chance to learn about, and use, digital systems such as CAD which has helped me to understand different drawing techniques for projects. I found this very enjoyable, and it has provided me with a wider range of knowledge about aspects of my trade and how important this technology is for the compressed air industry.

What tasks are you taking on in the workplace?

After finishing my level 2 diploma at MGTS I am now able to spend the majority of my days in the week at Direct Air. This means I’ve started to work with a range of experienced engineers which felt really refreshing and exciting after attending 1 year solid at college.

As I have been out with many different engineers it has helped me gain such a range of different techniques for completing tasks in the most efficient, yet safest way. I first started doing smaller jobs such as cleaning the machines and fetching tools for the engineers while I watched and studied how they completed the job. However in my recent weeks, as I have gained more knowledge than ever, I have begun getting involved with more essential jobs such as oil changes, separator swaps and cooler changes – all guided and supervised by my manufacturer trained co-workers of course!

Recently I also have been doing a lot more of the pipework side of the job with the installation engineers which I’m really enjoying. I feel as though I’m picking things up quicker now due to the knowledge and experience I’ve already gained of compressors from working on-site with the service engineers.

What’s your favourite thing about the apprenticeship?

I have found pipefitting one of the most enjoyable parts of my apprenticeship as every job I have done so far is different from the last. Completing the jobs alongside the rest of the team also gives me a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction once the work is finished.

Although the workplace, hand’s on side of my apprenticeship is what I prefer, I understand how beneficial the college and classroom learning side is as it provides me with the vital knowledge before heading into the real world of compressed air engineering.

How do you think the skills gained from the apprenticeship will help you to develop into successful career?

Both sides to my apprenticeship include many different challenges and obstacles I’ve been placed into; I think these aspects combined are providing me with skills for life.

The skills I’ve learnt so far in my one and a half years at Direct Air have been crucial, with information on tools, methods and safe working practices I knew nothing about before starting the apprenticeship. My assignments and work completed during my first year of college has taught me about various types of machinery that I’m likely to come across at different points in my Direct Air career.

Now that I have picked up these traits I can use them in any part of my career for the future, as well as helping me to continue successfully through my apprenticeship, gaining my qualifications at MGTS to a level 3 NVQ standard.