1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Currently studying at West Cheshire college full time, doing a BTEC level 3 course and Trailblazer for the first two years then hopefully moving onto HNC for third and fourth year. Only at Vauxhall during half terms so cant comment on day to day activities that go on there.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
During the first few months i have gained practical skills, such as milling, welding and turning which i either hadn't work on before or little knowledge. I have also developed my existing skills of team work since we're in college full time with the same group which some days tests.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
When i started this apprenticeship i was positive and fully enjoying it, right now at this moment in time i can't say the same unfortunately. Nothing to do with the course though enjoying BTEC and Trailblazer even though knowledge questions, job reports and cross-referencing can be tedious.
4. How valued do you feel by PSA Group?
At this current moment since i am in college full time, we don't have much contact with our employer so right now i would say i don't feel that valued especially when we work in plant during half term as a group we feel we are given jobs just to give us something to do but i suppose since i am a first year cant expect much though. Also with the amount of money Vauxhall are investing in me and the rest of the apprentices i do feel quite lucky and valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
I think the principles behind the program appear faultless but the execution of the program unfortunately has brought up many issues especially in the first term, example such as double booked rooms, tutors not being informed of the change between the old PEO to Trailblazer criteria and some case not being informed they are teaching it till few weeks before.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
The training provider being west Cheshire college i believe most tutors here go above and beyond what they will be getting paid on a regular bases. And try to perform their jobs to the best of their abilities with what they are provided with and how under staffed they are. Certain tutor, mainly contracted outside tutors, i don't believe keep up with the high standard demonstrated by most full/part time tutors here.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
So far i haven't received much support but that is due to no support being requested, we have regular ish meeting to check how we are performing in each of our subjects and any issues we wish to express with our employer. When in plant we were allowed an hour or so to do some college work about PLCs, so one of our managers earlier that day took us around parts of the plant to show us the different PLCs at Vauxhall and explained how they work etc.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
When you perform a comparison between most other apprentices performing a similar course to us we stack up quite well. Also when you look at it first year apprentices could be given a lot less which would save Vauxhall quite a lot so i cant complain.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
So far outside of college i have done nothing else with Vauxhall, and because we have a full time table i couldn't join the college football team. Outside of college i just play football for a local football team and work part time at a bar at weekends.
9. Would you recommend PSA Group to a friend?
I would definitely recommend Vauxhall to a friend do to the amount of opportunity there appears to be at the end of our second and fourth year where we can go on to HNC or some other training.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to PSA Group?
I would suggest to search around, apply for anything that takes your interest don't be to picky at first. You can never have to many interviews they all count towards practice, also you may find out something that wasn't advertise that changes your mind.