GFM Talks: Roy Haworth, Engineering Manager at Airbus

Staff from across the GFM were given an insight into apprenticeships at one of the area’s biggest engineering firms.

Roy Haworth, engineering manager at Airbus, discussed the benefits of apprenticeships and how they work at the company at the monthly GFM Talks yesterday (06/11).

Roy, who has worked there for 27 years, is also involved in the Early Careers Programme and works with schools and students across the area to give an overview of their options once they leave school.

“Apprenticeships are a way of gaining qualifications and work experience and getting paid at the same time,” he said.

“That has got to be set up in a certain way. The way the government has set it up is that 80 per cent of the time is spent on job training.

“They are learning the skills and attributes you need that are beyond academic knowledge. The rest of the time they are in college.”

To take on an apprenticeship at Airbus through the early years scheme, students need to have a 4’s in English and science – and a grade 6 in maths, alongside two other passes.

Students then have to complete tests and attend an interview. But Roy said it’s not just their academic side that comes into it – students need to be prepared for the world of work when they start their apprenticeship.

So, it’s down to staff at the schools to help prepare young people with the skills required for the workplace – and that includes their behaviour.

“We are looking for the motivated individual, not just the qualifications,” he said.

“We are also looking for the behaviour and the capability. We are looking for motivated individuals who will go all the way through their careers.

“One of the issues is that apprenticeships are not well enough understood in the education system.

“Apprenticeships are valued routes to getting a job. The issue is connecting the education system to the business system so the people who are coming out are appropriately qualified to do so.

“One thing that we are most interested in is their experience and their attitude.”

Previous and upcoming talks and further information can be accessed here: https://gfmat.org/gfm-talks/

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