Tom Greedy is a mechanical and electrical supervisor who joined us on an apprenticeship 13 years ago. Find out why being an apprentice was such a great part of his life.
"Our apprentices receive real world training that is invaluable in developing their competence." Tom Greedy
At school I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. I had no idea what career I wanted to go into. I had meetings with careers advisors who persuaded me away from my interest in music, but didn’t offer much insight into anything else that held my attention.
Job title: mechanical and electrical supervisor
Length of service: 13 years
Apprenticeship details: Mechanical & Electrical Engineering – Operations and Maintenance
Training provider: Leeds College of Technology
Knowing that I was leaving school that summer, I realised that I had to make a decision quickly. I re-visited my careers advisor one lunchtime at school and explained my situation. The advisor was short of time but handed me a pile of books from local colleges and local/national organisations. I locked myself in a room one evening and started reading.
When I came across an electrical engineering course at a local college, it instantly sparked my imagination. I knew that this offered enough technical and hands-on work to keep me interested while paying a wage that was within my expectations.
I was then advised to consider an apprenticeship in electrical engineering and applied for a position with British Waterways (now the Trust).
I was extremely nervous about the interview. I recall stuttering to most of the questions asked. Even though I felt that the interview had not gone so well, the interview panel must have seen through my nerves and they offered me the job.
Being an apprentice was a great part of my life. Everything was interesting and challenging. Every day I found myself encountering a different problem that I had to find a solution for. As time went by, I became more competent at solving problems and was allowed to work on more complex systems.
Mentoring apprentices today
I’ve mentored many apprentices and young volunteers at different points of their education. Sometimes we have work experience students through schools and college. Some become regular volunteers offering one-two days per week of their time to come out working with us. In return they receive on the job training and progression in line with their college work. This helps them when completing portfolio works that require signing off by workplace mentors as part of an NVQ qualification – they also have the possibility of gaining employment.
Our apprentices receive real world training that is invaluable in developing their competence for working on complex systems within industry.
Last date edited: 3 March 2017