Sewtec welcomes Wakefield College Students

7 April 2022

Sewtec recently welcomed five students from Wakefield College to our facilities to spend a week’s work experience with our teams learning how varied and exciting a career in engineering can really be.

The work experience comes as part of an ongoing commitment to offer students insight into the working world of engineering. In 2021, we were only able to engage with Wakefield College virtually via Teams, due to the restrictions in place with the pandemic. Of course, this didn’t quite compare to properly experiencing the work that goes on inside our facilities so this year, being able to invite the students to spend the week with us in person has been an honour.

In January of 2022, Sewtec representatives Joanne Carrington, Mark Atkins and Mark Dignum visited Wakefield College to do a talk about careers in engineering and to invite anyone interested to come for a tour of our facilities. From there, five students took Sewtec up on the offer and this later led to them signing up for a week’s work experience with us.

The five students each did a day across our various departments including the machine shop, CAD-CAM, quality inspection and electrical and mechanical fitting. Seeing for themselves the variety of roles on offer and a real insight into the exciting projects and innovations that engineering can offer, many of these students are now keen to pursue a career with Sewtec in the future, with a few looking to start an apprenticeship with us in the near future.

So, how did they find their week in the shoes of a Sewtec employee? We spoke to our students to find out how it went:

Ben – “My experience at Sewtec was nothing less than amazing. Everybody at Sewtec helped to deliver an experience no other place could. In the short week that I was there, I developed and experienced more skills than any college could offer. The varied work and employees at Sewtec meant that time never seemed to stop. The experience certainly helped solidify my choices in the career path I want to take.”

Tom – “I really enjoyed the work experience at Sewtec as it has developed my knowledge of engineering and taught me a lot more about the type of work there is in engineering and how each department is extremely important in a company’s success. I believe I learned more in the one week at Sewtec than I have over my first year at college.

I have learned many new skills and the company was extremely helpful in helping me decide what I want to do in the future; whether it was an apprenticeship or going to university. They explain that it is my decision and only I can choose what I want in the future, but they highlighted the advantages and disadvantages of both to help me decide. All of the staff working at Sewtec were extremely kind, helpful and understanding when teaching me how to work in their department. Overall, it was an amazing experience and I would recommend it to everyone.”

Curtis – “Sewtec allowed me to experience different aspects of engineering. This helped me decide which field of engineering I would like to continue studying and working in. The staff at Sewtec are great. They are friendly and helpful, explaining how things work, will be assembled and altered with the aid of electrical/mechanical diagrams. I like how Sewtec is a small company and all employees play a role in the operations and are a key component in how tasks and projects are carried out. They are very immersed in their work and take pleasure in explaining their day to day activities.”

Edward – “The week I spent at Sewtec was very helpful due to getting actual work experience and learning more than the theory they teach at college. Over the week, I spent time in each area of the profession, learning how they all fit in and work for a common goal. Overall, this was very helpful and allowed me to see what each part of engineering involved.”

Finley – “My experience at Sewtec has been very beneficial. It has provided me with more knowledge about various avenues in engineering. I enjoyed all aspects of the experience – especially the machine shop.”

But it doesn’t just stop with Wakefield College. We also have plans for April to visit the students at the University Centre Leeds, part of Leeds City College to give a talk on Sewtec and engineering during ‘employability week’.

Joanne Carrington, HR Advisor at Sewtec says, “At Sewtec, we’re committed to encouraging the youth to consider a career in engineering. With STEM careers becoming less and less popular, it’s up to us to shout about the exciting opportunities available within this incredible industry. To showcase what we do to local young people means a lot to us.”

Debbie Lee, Industry Placement Lead at Wakefield College says, “Wakefield College and Sewtec Automation have been successfully working together since 2018. Our students have been supported with employer engagement through work placements, site tours and guest talks. Sewtec Automation have placed their apprentices with ourselves and we are always looking at new ways in which we could work together.”