As a British manufacturer, we have, for some years, supported apprenticeships schemes. Shaun Nightingale, our Technical Director, explains why apprenticeships matter at Thesis Technology:
Apprenticeships have a very long history in the UK – stretching all the way back to the middle ages. In more modern times, apprenticeships have continued to be more common in traditional industries, such as manufacturing, than in other sectors. As such, they remain a great fit for us here at Thesis. We feel passionately about ensuring that British manufacturing continues to offer an excellent career path to young people, so our decision to include apprentices in our staff team provides a great way for us to educate and train the next generation.
Our first steps into apprenticeship were not taken through formal apprenticeship schemes, rather they were a means of supporting two students through their studies. We initially employed two young people on a part-time basis whilst they studied at Havant and South Downs College on a day release programme. Both were undertaking a technical engineering course and Thesis provided practical opportunities for them to understand our manufacturing operations and processes whilst they worked with us as Manufacturing Technical Assistants.
It was clear that the balance of study and practical experience offered by apprenticeships provided an excellent opportunity for both us and the students. So, in 2015, following the success of these first apprentices, we looked into formalising our approach. The support from local colleges was impressive and all of the schemes we considered provided good advice to ensure that the ‘fit’ was right for both the business and the apprentice.
To date, we have run two formal apprenticeship schemes, working with two Hampshire organisations – Havant and South Downs College and PETA (formerly known as Portsmouth Engineering Training Association).
Our current apprentice is Fin Huband who works for us as a technical apprentice. Fin typically works within the manufacturing team, making our range of LimbO waterproof protectors under guidance and supervision. His apprenticeship began in February 2018 and is scheduled to be completed at the end of the academic year in 2020. Fin works at Thesis four days a week and has one weekly college day at the South Downs College in Havant.
We are very proud to support apprenticeship schemes in the UK, and look forward to continuing to do so for many years to come.