From Apprentice to BIM Technician – Celebrating National Apprenticeship Week
As it’s National Apprenticeship Week, we thought we would share the inspiring stories of two of our apprentices, Alfie Brewster, who works in our London Studio and Danny Tunningley, who works in our Leeds Studio, both of whom joined us as apprentices.
At the end of last year, they were both promoted to become BIM technicians, in recognition of their fantastic progress and achievements. Their progress doesn’t stop there however, they have both opted to continue their studies in combination with their roles and are continuing with higher levels of apprenticeships, which will ultimately see them being awarded further qualifications. Here’s what they had to say about their apprenticeship experience.
Alfie knew an apprenticeship was for him when he began his first job at McDonald’s whilst studying his A levels and he realised that he was itching to get into the world of work. Studying A Levels in Maths, Physics, Product Design and Engineering, it was suggested that an apprenticeship in Engineering might suit him and his research led him to Civic Engineers.
Danny also researched Engineering apprenticeships after leaving high school, as he knew this was the direction he wanted to go in. He was particularly interested in a career in BIM as he knew that it was closely linked with Engineering and would be a key aspect of construction in the future. Danny applied for the apprenticeship with Civic Engineers and was successful in the recruitment process.
Looking back on their apprenticeships, both Alfie and Danny had some great tips and provided an insight into their experience. Talking about combining work and study and the discipline and organisation that requires, Danny’s tip is to work on assignments continuously, “Don’t leave everything to the last minute as this would lead to a total nightmare. Study needs to fit in with work schedules and deadlines so working on college projects on a regular basis avoids a lot of last minute stress”. Danny finds that experiences at work and college balance each other; he especially enjoys the modelling side of BIM and seeing how buildings develop and come together. College then improves his understanding of tasks that he’s doing on projects at work.
Alfie also found the mix of work and study daunting initially, “You have to learn how to prioritise work and college, together with balancing your life outside work”. Now he finds he’s in good routines and the support from everyone in the studio undoubtedly contributed to this. An apprenticeship was clearly the right route for Alfie, “being paid whilst learning was a great incentive and preferable to being skint whilst studying at university for 3 to 4 years”. The skills learned whilst studying ‘on the job’ are invaluable and a promotion to technician level before many of your counterparts have begun working is an attractive option. For Alfie, when he completes his higher level apprenticeship, his qualifications will be the equivalent of a degree, with the bonus of several years practical work experience.
Alfie really enjoys all aspects of his job at Civic Engineers, from the day to day drawings to all the different elements that contribute to a typical day. Alfie and Danny are perfect examples of how modern apprenticeships can help you achieve your career goals effectively. Both have opted to continue their learning whilst advancing their careers at Civic; a win-win for them and the practice!