Top CAT Apprentice
28 August 2012
Sam Fletcher is on top of the world, not only has the 18-year-old achieved a triple starred distinction in BTEC Mechanical Engineering, he’s also secured an apprenticeship with one of the biggest firms in the North East - Caterpillar Stockton.
Sam, from Linthorpe, a former Hall Garth pupil had considered taking A Levels in Physics and Maths with a view to becoming a Mechanical Engineer, until he read about the BTEC in Mechanical Engineering in Middlesbrough College’s full-time prospectus.
Sam said: “For me the course was perfect, it covers every aspect of what we need to learn, from practical engineering to drawing to industry standard, Business, Maths and Physics.
“We have to do a project where we design and create a product. We do everything from the initial design to working out costs and marketing. My project was a new design for a shopping trolley.
“My tutor, Kimberley York, has been absolutely brilliant and I can’t say enough good things about the College and the course. We had one to one evaluations and were encouraged to set our own targets and the tutors would help us achieve them. It really helped us to be proactive and manage our own time and projects.”
Sam is on day release to complete a HNC in Mechanical Engineering and will be back at Middlesbrough College one day a week in order to do that. The rest of his time he’ll be working for Caterpillar Stockton.
And Sam is following a long family tradition of working within the engineering sector.
Sam explained: “My mum Jo is an English teacher, but my dad Rob works at Johnson Matthey, he’s a Chemical Engineer there and my grandad worked at the old ICI and one of my uncles is at Pickering Lifts.
“I think apprenticeships are the way to go, you get valuable experience in your chosen industry, you get paid which is always nice! And you get a foot in the door with a company who start to get to know you.
“Hopefully I can get a permanent position at Caterpillar in the future, and with the resurgence in companies wanting skilled workers such as Mechanical Engineers and it would be fantastic if I can be part of that resurgence.”