From a young age I was always amazed with the theory behind flight. At school I enjoyed physics and mathematics, so it was a natural progression for me to follow these to A-Levels. As the flagship of aviation manufacture and design in the UK, Airbus attracted me early on, and when I was 14 years old, I spent a week on site at Filton completing a work experience program.
The experiences which I had in that week ignited my interest in aeronautical engineering, so much so that I spent a further week of work experience with the company before completing my A-Levels and joining the Airbus Higher Engineering Apprenticeship training scheme at 18 years old.
The scheme allowed me the unique opportunity to study for a Foundation Degree in Aerospace Engineering while working alongside colleagues to gain valuable knowledge of the workplace and an understanding of the key deliverables within. The apprenticeship provided me with the vocational, practical and academic skills which I will need to progress in the future. These skills are not something which I would have gained, had I attended university alone.
As part of my training scheme frame work I spent one year learning basic metallic hand skills. In contrast, I spent the final two years of the apprenticeship working in the Airbus UK Customer Services department, completing various placements around the business while attending lectures on a day release basis.
After graduation from the Apprenticeship, I secured a position within the Customer Services department. I now work as a Lean Specialist supporting the Engineering and Maintenance community. My work takes me to the different Airbus sites in Europe and enables me to work on the vanguard of change within the company.
In the future I would like to progress within the company; and in the long term, to take on a transnational leadership role.
I would advise others to be more open minded about their career path as there is more than one way to achieve your goal.