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Opportunities come full circle for HETA apprentices

25th May 2018

The new Advanced Engineering Training Centre being developed by HETA (Humberside Engineering Training Association) has afforded an exciting opportunity to two of its own apprentices – Connar Kemp and Kieran Welsh. The two 17-year olds are working on the multimillion pound site after being recruited by a leading Hull-based engineering consultancy firm.

A unique opportunity

Sutcliffe Consulting Engineers are the mechanical and electrical design consultants for HETA’s state-of-the-art £4.2 million facility on Dansom Lane in Hull. In its first venture into hiring apprentices, Sutcliffe identified the project as a prime training opportunity for its newest recruits.

“What’s unique about the HETA development is the level of involvement we have with the customer,” says Sutcliffe’s Director James Nicholson. “For Connar and Kieran, this presents an exceptional opportunity to understand the electrical and mechanical design aspects directly from the end-user’s perspective – something that doesn’t happen with many projects.”

The new centre, due to open in the summer, will feature impressive facilities, including a 15,000ft2 industry-standard workshop space, electronics and IT labs, as well as recreation spaces and conferencing capabilities.

Working on aspects such as the data and power drawings, and lighting calculations, Connar admits: “I’m slightly jealous that I won’t get to learn there! When I got told I would be working on the new HETA site, I knew it would be a great opportunity and the site looks incredible, with plenty of space and amazing equipment.” 

Building experience

Predominantly office-based, Connar and Kieran initially started with small assignments to build their confidence and proficiency across different areas of the business before moving on to more complex jobs, as well as site-based tasks. 

“Their ability to learn quickly has been incredibly impressive and proved a real asset to the business,” explains James. “When they joined us, they were starting from scratch but they can now run with many projects by themselves, which frees our more experienced engineers up to focus on other tasks and develop our business further.” 

After completing their HETA apprenticeships in a year’s time, Connar and Kieran’s future career prospects look bright, with Sutcliffe putting in place a development pathway that will see the duo obtain their degrees in the next five years.

“My first year in a workplace setting has flown by and I can’t wait to see where it takes me next,” says Connar. “I have learnt so much and have been able to get my teeth into some remarkable projects, such as the HETA site.

“It’s brilliant to have come full circle and know that I am helping other students to have the same opportunities I have had. It’s something that really resonates with me and I feel genuinely proud of what I have achieved.”