08 Feb 2021
This week marks the 14th annual celebration of apprenticeships taking place across England.
“Build the Future” is the theme, aiming to encourage everyone to consider how apprenticeships help individuals build the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career.
Since 2018, Space Engineering Services has been running an apprentice programme and is a lifetime opportunity to pursue a career in engineering. With numerous paths to choose from, the scheme offers to opportunity to develop skills in an interesting and diverse sector. The two-year programme is designed to provide a comprehensive knowledge of commercial refrigeration engineering technology, the industry, our business and our customers.
With it being National Apprenticeship Week, we want you to hear from our apprentices who joined us from the beginning to the present day, to gain insight into their own experiences of the programme.
I have been on the apprenticeship scheme for over a year now and have enjoyed it a lot. I have had a lot of experience in manufacturing at our Packbuild site, from brazing to wiring compressors and building cradles for the packs. I am now looking forward to expanding on my experience within Service. I feel like I have progressed well from when I first started the apprenticeship as I’ve gained more skills. I enjoyed college but found it difficult at times with the theory side of the course, but I got through it and passed. My favourite part of the apprenticeship is learning new things in the different areas of the company, from warehouse work to service work. The advice I’d give to a new starter would be to have more confidence in yourself and know that nothing is going to be straight forward but to keep at it and don’t give up.
Being an older apprentice, I was initially hesitant to apply for the position. However, since joining the company, I have no regrets as the career change was what I needed. I have grown massively in confidence and have worked with some great engineers across multiple contracts who have passed down their knowledge and skills to me. As a mature student, I struggled during college, however, we had great tutors and support to guide us. If I were to advise anybody wishing to join the industry, I would highly recommend the career change as it is such a rewarding and interesting career.
My experiences so far, I enjoyed college, I found the theory difficult at times, however, I got on very well with the tutors and others in the class which helped me through it. I liked working away, and I was away quite a lot working in different parts of the company at the beginning. My advice to anyone starting an apprenticeship would be to get as much hands-on experience as possible. Ask lots of questions to the engineers who you work with and they will do their best to guide you and answer your questions.
It was a good, and varied apprenticeship because not only did I cover service work, I was also able to do some commissioning work, design work and pack building in the first year. It was good going to college and meeting other people from other companies seeing what they do differently. I am now part of the Amazon/Boots team in the South, which I am enjoying a great deal. I would recommend a refrigeration apprenticeship with Space Engineering to anyone who is looking to get into the industry as I have been well looked after and have fantastic job opportunities to progress in the company.
My apprenticeship with Space Engineering was a great experience which allowed me to grow in many different ways, with the ability to learn at college and then use the knowledge whilst on the job. Getting to experience different departments within the company helped me find the right fit.
From the start of my apprenticeship programme, I was paired up with engineers and put into the field to learn the jobs hands-on. I liked this as it is the best way for me to learn. Then in September 2018, we started college. College was good, as it gives you a good understanding of the actual principles of refrigeration and the science behind it. When college finished in July 2019, I had gained a lot of experience from different jobs and contracts and you would never have the same day twice a week. From June 2020, I was able to attend jobs alone which was a big step forward in my progression.
I have enjoyed working for Space Engineering, and I was welcomed by my colleagues and have felt well supported. I enjoyed my time at College, but it was unfortunate that this was cut short due to COVID. I would encourage anyone looking for a career in this industry, to apply for the Space Engineering apprenticeship.
I started working for Space in our National Operations Centre with only a vague idea of how a fridge works and no awareness, at all, of the scale and importance of the industry. I certainly didn’t foresee myself starting a career in refrigeration, but the more I spoke to engineers and learned about the technology behind it, the more interesting it seemed. When I was told about the upcoming apprenticeship programme, I decided to apply. I was 25 when I started my apprenticeship, the oldest among the group and, to be honest, I did worry that I might be a little old to be starting such a long process. Like, everyone, I had rent and bills to think about, and I would have to make sure I would be able to get by while doing my training. The last few years have flown by though, and I’m really happy I took the chance when it came up. Space Engineering has been so supportive and the training from Bath College, Cool Concerns and all the guys who’ve helped me out on site have been amazing. If you’re a bit older and are considering doing an apprenticeship or moving from another part of the business to the field, I’d definitely encourage it.
So far, my experience at Space Engineering has been excellent. I have enjoyed college, getting to know the other apprentices, and gaining all the knowledge I could before going out on site. After spending some time at our Packbuild manufacturing site, I was able to meet new people and learn all the skills needed to go out and begin my new journey. I have now joined the Commissioning team and am really enjoying learning all the skills and processes that go along with it. My advice for anyone wanting to join this industry would be to make sure you listen to what your engineer and those on site tell you and to always use their experience for your benefit.
I joined Space Engineering in August 2020, I was based at our Pack Build manufacturing site.
I worked on headers, measured pipework to the correct lengths and applying all the components such as elbows, ball valves and brazing it all together and silver solder if required.
I also got the chance to work on wiring compressors and kitting them out with components. All of this was a great experience for my future. I now have a work van, meet engineers on site and learn the service and maintenance side of the company which is going well. I look forward to gaining my F-Gas and other relevant qualifications along my future progression path.
As you can see from above, the programme has given the apprentices such a wealth of knowledge, and we congratulate them all on their journey so far.
We look forward to welcoming more apprentices in future programmes.