Four young apprentices have begun the practical element of their training at SSE’s Greater Gabbard offshore wind farm off the Suffolk coast.
Following a highly competitive selection process which included challenging written assessments and practical aptitude tests, Kyle Pickering (21) and Matthew Grant (17), both from Lowestoft, Connor Delayney (19) from Great Yarmouth and James Lines (21) from Bradwell managed to fend off several other high calibre candidates to embark on the advanced apprenticeships in Wind Turbine Maintenance scheme.
The initial element of the apprenticeship scheme Kyle, Matthew, Connor and James are doing saw new recruits attend Grimsby College, where they learned technical skills and the theory behind engineering as a foundation for their learning.
They will now gain valuable ‘hands on’ experience by spending time on-site at Greater Gabbard. This practical approach allows each apprentice to put their learning into practice and will ensure they are ready for the challenges that lie ahead when the SSE apprenticeship programme has been completed and they begin their new roles as qualified technicians.
All four apprentices have now successfully completed their first term at college, where they have seen positive progress, not only in their engineering studies but with learning new life skills whilst they are away from home.
Danny Ramsbottom, Senior Operations Engineer and apprenticeship mentor at SSE said:
“Our apprenticeship programme is an important part of our recruitment strategy at SSE with all apprentices enjoying high standards of training and education to become engineers of tomorrow.
“We ‘grow our own’ talent at SSE and employ 650 apprentices or trainees at any given time. SSE is also one of the largest FTSE 100 employers to pay the Living Wage so our trainees are being paid fairly as they learn valuable hands-on skills.
“I am exceedingly proud of all the Greater Gabbard apprentices and I look forward to working alongside them all in the future. They are a credit to themselves and SSE.”
Apprentice Kyle Pickering said: “I am really enjoying the apprenticeship so far – in particular the electrical training element of the course and I think I want to progress further in that field. Aspects of the training like specialist survival skills and working at height have also really boosted my confidence and helped me get ready to put what I’ve learned into practice at Greater Gabbard.”