The second of today’s blogs is another example of the hard-working and driven apprentices our sectors employ. It is great to be able to showcase these female apprentices on International Women & Girls in Science Day who are role models for other women and girls who are looking to join the sector through an apprenticeship.

My name is Jasmine Hibbert, I am 19 years old and I am currently in my fourth year of my apprenticeship at Produmax. Produmax is a precision engineering company that specialises in aerospace, whilst also exploring other avenues such as oil, gas and renewables. In my fourth year I am studying a HNC in mechanical manufacturing engineering at Keighley college alongside a Level 4 NVQ. This adds to the qualifications I have already achieved, a BTEC in mechanical manufacturing engineering and a level 3 NVQ.

As an apprentice my job role allows me to learn on the job and to improve my knowledge daily. I am a cell coordinator which involves managing machines and the production within that area. This has allowed me to develop leadership skills and to pass on my knowledge to other apprentices.

What made you want to pursue a career in the sector and an apprenticeship?

Whilst at school I always had an interest in the more practical subjects and had the opportunity to do GCSE Engineering. This identified that I wished to pursue a career in Engineering and I was able to source an apprenticeship in this field. Apprenticeships allow you to work, learn and earn at the same time whilst also learning other important life skills such as leadership, communication and self-learning.

What is your day to day role like and has it changed much due to the pandemic?

Fortunately, I have been able to continue working through the pandemic although there have been some changes. The aerospace industry has seen a huge impact from the pandemic, however management within Produmax have been keen to find other lines of work. We have been taking on lots of new customers which gives positive outlooks for the future.

Day to day I run 3 and 5 axis milling machines working with aluminium. During the first wave of the pandemic, Produmax played a huge impact in the UK Ventilator challenge being able to machine parts to help supply 20 years’ worth of ventilators in 12 weeks. I worked extra shifts to be able to support this work. This gave me a sense of achievement in supporting the fight against the pandemic.

Have you worked on any interesting projects/programmes during your apprenticeship and can you provide details any details of the work?

Through the academic side of my apprenticeship I completed a project with my peers where we manufactured a soap box and were able to participate in a derby to race the vehicles. Developing this soap box allowed me to explore different manufacturing techniques. In the workplace there is always the opportunity to improve processes and put forward your ideas for improvements.

What has been the best thing about your apprenticeship?

During my apprenticeship I have had the opportunity share my knowledge with others. I have been involved in careers events at local Secondary Schools and promoting women in Engineering at company and college events.

One of my best experiences was visiting a primary school to talk to young children about the importance of STEM learning and showing the ways STEM is involved in our daily lives.

Would you recommend an apprenticeship to people looking to make a first step in their career, and why?

I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship to anyone no matter what stage you are at in your education path. Apprenticeships are able to offer the same qualifications but have the added benefit of hands on experience.

What is your advice to someone who would like to join an apprenticeship scheme in the sector?

I would advise all students to consider the apprenticeship route of education and training. There is a large variety available and gives an alternative practical route to enter a career pathway.

To find out what else is coming up this week and read the other blogs, please read our National Apprenticeship Week 2021 blog.