Our Apprentices are soaring into 2017

It is National Apprenticeship Week (6-10 March) and our apprentices are now six months into their Aeronautical Engineering apprenticeship. We caught up with them recently to find out about their journey so far and their future aspirations.


Following an intense training programme, the apprentices learning has been highly active with a mixture of classroom based learning, exams, and a variety of practical phases undergoing basic hand skills; interpreting engineering drawings, measuring and marking out dimensions on sheet metal, cutting, filing, forming and riveting, and further in-depth skills on an aircraft.

Six months into the scheme, the apprentices are highly enthused and encouraged by the course and what they have learnt and achieved so far.

Katie has built a great rapport with her trainers and peers. She said: I have really enjoyed meeting and working with the different airlines apprentices.  They all give you support to get through the course and I feel like I have made some new friends that I will keep in touch with long after we have completed this course."

Fraser has overcome the challenge of going back to a ‘classroom environment’ and is looking forward to the coming months.  He said: “Getting stuck into metal work has been a highlight. I am starting to develop my hand skills and enjoy understanding the layout of engineers’ drawings and then being able to create it from scratch.”

Ryan has learned the importance of note taking and keeping on top of the busy training schedule. He said: “It has been a challenge working to the strict conditions in the workshop however I have enjoyed the transition from the classroom to the workshop as I have been able to put into practice the theory I have learned.”

George is looking forward to continuing his training with AirTanker at RAF Brize Norton.
He said: “Throughout the apprenticeship so far I feel I have studied a wide and varied range of skills that can be applied to my future engineering prospects with AirTanker.  I have overcome the challenge of adapting to new course material and have found a way of learning that has worked best for me.”


James has learnt the great importance of attention to detail required within the aviation industry. He said: “Some of the modules have been challenging due to the shear amount of information however working in the workshop has been a nice break and has been my favourite experience so far.”

Bradley has appreciated the challenge of coming into the apprenticeship with no aviation background and learning from scratch. He said: “The workshop phase provides a nice break from classroom studies however it still has its own challenges; working to deadlines and correct tolerances. It has been good to get hands on experience to consolidate our knowledge on what we had been learning from the books.”

Firmly into the New Year, their training will continue further with a mix of classroom based learning, exams and practical studies, culminating with structured training on-aircraft systems operations and maintenance.  This will provide the apprentices with all the necessary initial skills to continue their hands-on training and completion of their aeronautical NVQ once they arrive back at AirTanker.

Paul Heane, Technical Training Manager has been behind this apprentice scheme since it started.  He is impressed with the progress the apprentices are making and is now looking forward to seeing them back at AirTanker in May 2017.  He said:

“Our apprentices have settled into their training phase at Resource Group extremely well.  They have successfully adapted to their learning environment which, for many, was a challenge in itself. The feedback received from Resource Group is a great testament to the success of the scheme and the hard work and dedication of our apprentices. I very much look forward to watching them integrate within Line and Base Maintenance on their return and launching our next Apprenticeship intake.”

The second intake for our Aeronautical Engineering Apprenticeship Scheme will commence in September 2017. Applications will be open soon and details will be available on our apprenticeship website.

10 March 2017