1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My roll includes gaining experience hours in the 5 main NDT techniques used in the aerospace industry. As well as going to university, working on projects and undertaking STEM events. Day to day work includes odd, more typical, apprentice jobs as well as large scale ownership of projects at the forefront of the business. Apprentices take pride and ownership of these projects as they make us feel a real part of the business.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Yes, many soft skills have been developed including computer and IT skills as well as general working life skills. Time management has been improved for all apprentices and communication skills have increased dramatically. Other skills such as NDT techniques have been gained with apprentices gaining approval in a method within the first year.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I very much enjoy this apprenticeship and working for Rolls Royce. The culture of the company is incredible and the employees are very proud of the company. Everyone is always happy to help develop apprentices and give them as much of their knowledge as possible as they are aware that the future of the company is in the hands of the apprentices. Many of the current employees started as apprentices.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme is very well structured with university, southwest school of NDT courses all taking place throughout the years. We undertake placements throughout the business for approximately 6 months at a time. These include production facilities as well as more office based placements with a larger focus on research and development. Apprenticeships start with an appreciation course for manufacturing techniques such as milling and turning, welding and CNC.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
Each apprentice has an Apprentice Development Leader. These people look after the apprentices development. On a personal level, the support received from my employer is incredible, I am dyslexic and have received equipment from Rolls Royce to help me achieve my maximum potential at university. We also have programme leaders who are responsible for the apprentices but are also working in the industry. They are also greatly supportive of all apprentices. I feel that there is maximum support for apprentices and any issues raised would be resolved by the apprentice team.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
The University of Northampton are very supportive, we have a programme leader who has good communication with our apprentice development leader. The lectures are always happy to help and take an interest in our development and understanding of the company. Plenty of material is supplied by the university and as we are distance learning students, we can book meetings with subject experts who can help with the understandings of many different concepts. Having used this for maths, I feel the support available at the university is great.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
All the modules undertaken at university have a direct link back to our every day jobs. This includes materials science, maths, industry practice and 2 NDT modules. I feel the study we undertake at university could not be more suited to our every day jobs. The degree is tailor made for our apprenticeship and therefore, could not help us to perform any better for our role.
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
Yes, there are many sports teams including rugby, football etc. There are also apprentice social events throughout the year. As well as being invited to social events particular to the placement we are on at the time.
There are many professional networking events we are able to attend also. Recently we attended the national materials testing exhibition where many professionals were keen to get to know us.
9a. Would you recommend Rolls-Royce to a friend?
Rolls-Royce are a fantastic employer who have apprentice development high in priority. The work apprentices do makes us feel worthwhile and a key part of the business. Everyone is welcoming and the opportunities are endless. As well as this, the employee benefits are great and the company looks after their people very well.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Rolls-Royce?
Make sure your knowledge of the company is great. Interviewers look for candidates who understand and appreciate the company, how it works and the sectors they operate in.
Work hard and be confident. Demonstrate why they should invest so much into you and be passionate about your experiences and how they will help you be successful at Rolls-Royce.
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