Holly Dore, 17, from Blandford, is set to become an apprentice in September at Superior, based in Ferndown, Dorset. She is currently studying for her A-levels in physics, biology, chemistry and Level 3 Core Maths at Queen Elizabeth’s School in Wimborne.
Before signing up for an apprenticeship, she joined the team at Superior, a leading manufacturer of high integrity o-rings and seals, for work experience so that she could find out more about the company.
|Q:||When did you start your work experience at Superior?|
|A:||I had three days of work experience in 2018 and then came back for three more days in April 2019.|
|Q:||How did you hear about Superior?|
|A:||At our school we have an apprenticeship fair, so there are loads of different companies there. I went round to speak to the different companies and the Superior team were really nice. I asked if they offered work experience and they said that they did. Superior also runs The QEube event at my school’s annual ACE Festival, which is a sports and charity event.|
|Q:||What did you do on your work experience?|
|A:||Last year I made a brass g-clamp and a g-clamp screw, and then I made several screws of different types to see which one is best. This year, I was involved in solving a real engineering problem (Holly was involved in solving a real engineering problem, it wasn’t set up – this was a real scenario where Holly made a part to support one of our manufacturing facilities) where parts were getting stuck on a sensor. We made a small acrylic guard for the machine, which was then given to the quality team to test. We made it using the CNC mill and tested it where we realised that it needed another groove and so we re-wrote the programme that I drew for the machine.
We also made a an O-ring jig using a manual lathe. I was using the programme on the computer for the CNC lathe, so you draw the programme on the computer and then it will make the part for you. The training manager has been helping me during my work experience, I got to walk around and see what other people were doing in different departments. I am proud of everything that I have done, as I wouldn’t get to do any of it normally.
|Q:||Would you recommend work experience to other young people?|
|A:||I think work experience is really valuable. Before I came to Superior, I knew that I wanted to work in engineering and I’ve always been interested in science, but it’s quite a broad term, so I wasn’t sure what that entailed and what parts I would enjoy. Now that I have finished the work experience, I realise that this is something that I really want to do. It’s good fun.|
|Q:||In September, you will join Superior’s in-house Academy. What made you choose to go onto an apprenticeship?|
|A:||An apprenticeship made more sense to me because you can gain a degree with Superior and you can learn practical skills rather than just sitting in a lecture hall at university, and you get to do it within a company.|
Superior has its own in-house Apprenticeship Academy on-site, offering apprenticeships to students as young as 16. It gives apprentices the chance to learn about engineering, science and manufacturing and all apprentices are given the opportunity to gain a degree.