“I am really enjoying my time at BMW/MINI. This first year, I’ve been doing five days a week at college and I’m also studying for an EUC and EAL Level 3 qualification. The course is interesting and really allows me to test my skills in many topics of engineering. The company really pushes me to get the best possible results I can and a lot of good support is provided if I need it, which is incredibly helpful for me.”
He continues: “Everyone I have met within the company is very friendly, always happy to help with anything I need. I’m really happy with my apprenticeship so far and I am looking forward to seeing where it progresses.”
The opportunity to secure an apprenticeship at BMW arose through a work placement. James said: “I first gained my interest in BMW when I did a week’s work experience with them in Year 10. After shadowing a few of the different employees, I knew this was something I wanted to do. I first applied for an apprenticeship with MINI Plant Swindon in my last year of school. Unfortunately, I did not get in, but I decided to still continue my studies in engineering. For me, UTC Swindon was the best option as it was an engineering college itself in addition to having the exact course I wanted to take – Engineering BTEC Level 3 (continuing from my Engineering BTEC Level 2 in school). I really enjoyed UTC and the sense of community they had in the college. Around the time I was studying at UTC, the opportunity to apply for BMW/MINI came up again. I applied this time and I got the Toolmaker Apprenticeship!”
Since securing his apprenticeship, James has been back to UTC Swindon, representing BMW to speak to current students about their career options and to give guidance based on his own experiences.