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Hunterston B celebrates Tomorrow’s Engineers
As part of Tomorrow’s Engineers Week, Hunterston B is inspiring local science students to consider a career in engineering.
Forty pupils from Irvine Royal Academy visited the North Ayrshire power station for a tour of the site and to learn about the many career opportunities available with EDF Energy.
The third year students (aged 14/15), who are all studying physics and chemistry, also had the chance to speak with current apprentices Rachel Pellegrini and Conor Logie to find out what life is like as an EDF Energy apprentice.
Claire Carten, teacher at the Academy, said: “I am hoping the visit will inspire the students into seriously thinking about what sort of a career they would like, and be excited about the engineering opportunities on their doorstep.”
Rachel Pellegrini, a third year apprentice who joined the scheme after studying higher maths, English, chemistry, computing and human biology, was on hand to answer questions about the scheme.
She said: "The apprenticeship scheme is a great opportunity for any one who is interested in engineering, you learn the basics in your first year which you will build on for the rest of your time as an apprentice and all throughout your career. I would advise anyone who is struggling to decide between university and an apprenticeship to apply as it is the best decision I have made for my future."
Colin Weir, Hunterston B Station Director, said: "Apprentices are an important part of EDF Energy’s business today and tomorrow, for our existing power stations and those that are in the planning stages. It is vital that we continue to foster good links with our schools and colleges in the region so students can see the breadth of roles on offer in the nuclear industry. An apprenticeship provides the skills, confidence and qualifications to join our industry’s next generation of engineers."
Paul Jackson, Chief Executive at EngineeringUK, said: “EDF Energy and others like it around the UK are embracing Mission Inspiration with events and activities to mark Tomorrow’s Engineers Week. Engineering makes a vital contribution to the UK economic growth and offers a wealth of varied and rewarding careers. To ensure British engineering continues to thrive we need to inspire future engineers.
Engineering companies will have over 2.5 million job openings over this decade, across a diverse range of disciplines. However, we need many more school children, particularly girls, choosing the GCSEs, A levels, apprenticeships, degrees or other vocational pathways that will lead to engineering careers.”
The EDF Energy Engineering Maintenance Apprentice Scheme is now open for applications until January. To apply you’ll need at least five GCSEs (or equivalent) at grade C or above in Maths, English and at least two science subjects.
For more information contact:Juliette Sanders
External Communications Manager - Generation
Notes to editors
EDF Energy Engineering Maintenance Apprentice Scheme
Each year around 60 new apprentices join the four-year programme, which is based at Babcock’s Engineering Academy HMS Sultan, near Portsmouth.
The recruits spend their first two years at HMS Sultan and the final two years at their base power station.
Being away from home provides the opportunity for the young people to acquire vital life skills, confidence and independence as well as developing technical capabilities. Apprentices report that it's an opportunity to ‘earn while you learn' providing a real alternative to university, leading to a wide range of career opportunities.
In fact, many of the leaders of EDF Energy’s Generation business started their careers as apprentices including the current Managing Director Stuart Crooks.
Some apprentices choose to continue their education beyond the four-year scheme. Once in a role at a power station they might pursue degrees or professional qualifications as they progress their careers.
Tomorrow’s Engineers Week
Tomorrow’s Engineers Week (#TEWeek15), organised by Engineering UK, takes place from 2-6 November 2015 and aims to change perceptions of engineering among young people, their parents and teachers to inspire future engineers.
EngineeringUK is an independent organisation which promotes the vital contribution of engineers, engineering and technology in our society. EngineeringUK partners business and industry, government and the wider science and engineering community: producing evidence on the state of engineering, sharing knowledge within engineering and inspiring young people to choose a career in engineering, matching employers’ demand for skills. EngineeringUK leads engagement programmes The Big Bang and Tomorrow’s Engineers. www.engineeringuk.com.
EDF Energy in Scotland
In Scotland EDF Energy operates Hunterston B in North Ayrshire and Torness in East Lothian which employ over 1,000 staff and around 500 contracting partners across the two power stations. EDF Energy employs a further 200 office based staff in East Kilbride. As well as generating enough power to serve some 4 million homes the company also provides gas and electricity to over 80,000 Scottish customers with around half of those opting for one of the company’s Blue+ products which are backed by low-carbon generation. We operate two windfarms in the Scottish Borders and make sure we buy enough electricity generated from a low-carbon nuclear source to match every unit of electricity we estimate our Blue customers use. EDF Energy is proud to power up some of the largest organisations in the UK, including supplying almost all public sector bodies in Scotland with after being awarded Scotland’s largest electricity supply contract by annual volume from April 2013. Following a landmark agreement with Network Rail the company also provides nuclear-backed Blue energy to power up the UKs electric rail network, covering most of the south east of England and the main lines from London to Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as the Merseyrail network around Liverpool and the Glasgow suburban network.