After successfully completing his GCSEs, Daniel Ord from Lees in Oldham embarked on an A Level course at college. However, after a year, he decided that full time academic study wasn’t for him. 18 year old Daniel had always been interested in engineering, and decided to look for an opportunity to get practical experience as well as getting qualified. He researched a number of courses at local colleges and training providers, and eventually successfully applied to join the Engineering Pre-Apprenticeship course run by The Skills Company at their Tameside base. 

The course lasts for 20 weeks, and is intended to prepare young people to be able to start an Engineering Apprenticeship and be useful to the employing company from day one. The course covers subjects including bench fitting, wiring and testing electrical circuits, preparing and using milling equipment, and preparing and using lathes for turning operations. The course also provides support for the students with CV and interview preparation, and has an excellent record of placing students into Apprenticeships with local engineering companies.

Daniel has already secured an Apprenticeship with a local company weeks before the end of the course. He will be starting an Electrical Engineering Advanced Apprenticeship at SG Equipment Ltd in Audenshaw in February. S.G.Equipment was established in 1998 and supplies ground equipment to all major UK military and civil aircraft programmes. Among the company’s major customers are BAe Systems, the Ministry of Defence and Westland-Agusta.

As well as looking forward to starting his new career, climbing enthusiast Daniel also has another important date coming up in May. He’s completed all three levels of the Duke of Edinburgh Award, bronze, silver and gold and has been selected from thousands of D of E participants to meet the Queen during the Award’s Diamond Anniversary year. 

Daniel said:
“I’ve always been interested in engineering and finding out how things work. Several members of my family have been electrical engineers, so I’m following in a family tradition. I chose this course because it looked more practical and hands-on than some other courses, and I’m really glad that I did. The tutors have all been really friendly and helpful, and the facilities were much better than I expected. They really try to prepare you for working in engineering, and it’s worked out very well for me. You get an introduction to aspects of engineering that I wasn’t even aware of. At my interview at SG Equipment, they said they would support my development as far as I wanted to go, right up to degree level. My aim is to get fully qualified and experienced, and to progress as far as I can within the company. At some stage in the future I’d like to have a job that involves travelling.”

“I think that the experience I got doing the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme has really helped me during the course and in getting my Apprenticeship. I had all kinds of experiences going through the stages of the award, including volunteering in South Africa and climbing Gran Paradiso, the highest mountain in Italy at over 13,000 feet. It’s given me much more confidence in myself, as well as developing skills like teamwork, leadership and problem solving. I feel honoured to have been selected to meet the Queen, and along with starting my Apprenticeship, it looks like it’s going to be a great year for me!”