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Day 5, and the final day of Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2017. Today we’d like you to meet Greg, who is in the third year of his Fabrication and Welding Modern Apprenticeship.
What made you choose Fabrication and Welding, and how did you learn about the Modern Apprenticeship?
I was always told that it would be good to get a trade. It’s been drilled into me since I was young! I read the college prospectus while I was still at school. After that I applied online to the college, went for an interview and then did two years at college.
Why this one in particular?
My friend’s dad always talked about welding and it sounded interesting so I thought I’d give it a try. When I started at college I realised I was enjoying the course so I stuck with it. I came into Dustacco every two weeks looking for a job – I think they got tired of seeing me because they eventually gave in and told me to apply through the college! So I asked my lecturer and he submitted the application for me.
Did you have any fab experience?
Not with metal. I did some joinery and some stuff at school.
Did you have any particular expectations?
I thought I’d just be stuck in a bay all day, but I’m out on site a lot. I enjoy being in the workshop and learning, but it’s great being out and about at the different sites as well and gaining new experience.
What do you like best about the Modern Apprenticeship and working with Dustacco?
I’m just writing up all my paperwork at the moment, which I’m enjoying. There’ll be some practical tasks that I’ll need to do for Colin (Paterson – Ayrshire College Vocational Assessor) but I haven’t started that yet. I did all of my college work before I started with Dustacco. It means that I’m getting a lot of “on-the-job” experience, but I’ve had to learn faster than I would have if I’d done the college work at the same time. I’ve never had any problems though; if I’m stuck then everybody will stop what they’re doing and help out. I like trying new stuff, being hands on and getting lots of practice. Everyone is really friendly, they’re really nice – I’m not so nice to them though! It’s good, everybody gets on great. It’s good having Robert and Jamie around, because we’re all in the same boat so we can all support each other if we need it. And having Shaun (Hawkins – Dustacco Welder / Fitter) and Kieran (McAllister – Dustacco Welder / Fitter) here is a huge help because they went through the apprenticeship with Dustacco as well, so they’re able to give lots of advice.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging?
When I started, I had to adjust to learning in a work-based environment, which is a lot different from learning at school or college. If I fabricate something at college and it isn’t quite right then it’s not the end of the world, whereas at Dustacco it’s so important to make sure everything is done to specification because these items are being used on sites.
What do you want to do after your apprenticeship?
I want to get a few more years’ experience and learn as much as I can. Then my goal is to work my way up until eventually I’m running the place!