MTC Training Apprentices’ careers take flight

7 November, 22
Ambitious apprentices at MTC Training – the training arm of the Manufacturing Technology Centre – are celebrating after completing an important milestone in their early careers.

Ambitious apprentices at MTC Training – the training arm of the Manufacturing Technology Centre – are celebrating after completing an important milestone in their early careers.

Learners have been awarded certificates which recognise their contribution to Project Slingshot, a collaborative initiative giving learners the opportunity to help build and fly an aeroplane. The event was the final milestone in the first year of their apprenticeship training at the Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre before returning to their employers to begin their on-the-job training in the second year of a four-year programme.

In recognition of their work on the project and the skills they have gained, each apprentice was presented with a certificate of completion thanking them for their contribution. They now hand over the aircraft build to MTC Training’s newest cohort of apprentices, who will complete the build of the wings ready for a formal inspection of airworthiness.

Project Slingshot is the Air League’s aircraft building initiative to deliver STEM learning through building a fully flight-capable light aircraft. The programme is part of MTC Training’s comprehensive programme which supports learners to develop the additional skills required for personal and professional success alongside the technical expertise delivered within the core apprenticeship standard. The MTC Training apprentices are part of a consortium that includes students at Aston University Engineering Academy as well as the Royal Air Force.

David Grailey, managing director of MTC Training, said, “I’m very proud of our apprentices for volunteering and getting involved in Project Slingshot. This is a significant moment in the apprentices’ learning journeys. Successfully completing the first year of their apprenticeship is a great achievement in itself, so building the wings of a plane alongside their core programme is an extraordinary accomplishment. Their skills, dedication and commitment have got the project off to great start and set a high standard for the next crop of apprentices who will complete the build.

“Our training team gives our learners a strong foundation of essential advanced manufacturing skills during their first year in the training centres, empowering them to deliver tangible value as soon as they re-join their teams onsite. The extra technical and soft skills that the learners have gained through Project Slingshot will make them even more capable, as well as demonstrating their excellent attitude, making them stand out colleagues for their employers,” he added.

Ian Morrison, CEO of the Air League, said, “We’re incredibly proud of the achievements and successes of this first cohort of Project Slingshot. Air League’s central mission is to change lives through aviation – and what better way to do that than by empowering apprentices to build an aircraft.

“Not only is this a unique and inspirational project at face value, but it will hopefully prove to showcase what impact and output STEM skills and knowledge can have, helping to motivate learners throughout the remainder of their important apprenticeship schemes, as well as the rest of the careers going forward.”

Supported by the Department for Transport, Project Slingshot will result in the manufacture of an airworthy Sling 2 aircraft. It gives MTC Training’s apprentices an insight into a career in aerospace and aircraft manufacture, as they gain hands-on experience by building the aircraft assemblies to a professional standard, as well as a chance to fly in an aircraft they have built themselves.

The MTC was founded by the University of Birmingham, Loughborough University, the University of Nottingham and TWI Ltd, with industrial members including some of the UK’s major global manufacturers.

Part of the High Value Manufacturing Catapult, supported by Innovate UK, the MTC aims to provide a competitive environment to bridge the gap between university-based research and the development of innovative manufacturing solutions, in line with the Government’s manufacturing strategy.

Pictured: The Project Slingshot certificate ceremony at the MTC

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