Huge congratulations to engineering apprentice James Todd who achieved the position of finalist (out of 3,500 applicants) in the City of Coventry Freemen’s Guild Apprentice of the Year Award 2019. Below we find out why James was such a worthy contestant.

Lee Beesley, MGTS Training and Development Adviser describes James as a highly focussed and professional young engineer who always puts maximum effort into any task set. “James clearly has a passion for his chosen career which is evident from both the level of detail in his written work and how he always completes any work required before the deadline set. James has also demonstrated that he is willing to assist other apprentices where possible by offering his support, for example with maths tuition. James is a first class example of what can be achieved if you grasp an opportunity to learn and for this reason I am sure James has a bright future ahead of him.”

Ian Lloyd, Head of Manufacturing at Amtico tells us…“James joined Amtico on the Operational Apprenticeship scheme in 2017. This was the first time we had run a scheme across the entire manufacturing function, and we knew it would be a challenge with such a wealth of knowledge to absorb, from specific manufacturing processes to Health & Safety and Quality Management.

“James has proved himself to be a real team player and has approached every challenge with a thoroughly positive and professional attitude. His commitment and determination to understand and improve processes has generated visible results, specifically in the Health & Safety department where his efforts in championing incident reporting have helped to reduce lost time due to injury figures well below our stated target.

“Adaptable, with excellent communication skills, James has built strong relationships in all departments, and his ability to show empathy with others has allowed him to sensitively challenge the status quo. He listens carefully and makes suggestions for process improvements, whilst still managing to keep colleagues on board and aligned with company goals.

“We are extremely proud of James’ achievements during his short time at Amtico and are confident he has a bright future ahead of him.”

James gives us an overview of his experience as an engineering apprentice…

“I am currently in my third year of the apprenticeship and am working towards my Higher National Certificate. During my 1st and 2nd year, I completed my Business and Technology Education Council (BTEC) Diploma Level 3 in Advanced Manufacturing Engineering, achieving distinctions in every subject, whist also handing in a large proportion of assignments early and before the deadline dates. The subjects completed during my first and second year include:

First Year

  • Communications for Engineering Technicians
  • Health and Safety in the Engineering Workplace
  • Mathematics for Engineering Technicians
  • Properties and Applications of Engineering Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Principles in Engineering
  • Organisational Efficiency and Improvement

Second Year

  • Computer Aided Drafting in Engineering
  • Mechanical Principles of Engineering Systems
  • Further Engineering Mathematics
  • Engineering Project
  • Business Operations in Engineering

“During my first year, I was off-site and full time at MGTS. Whilst there, I had the opportunity to learn and develop new skills which would become invaluable as a manufacturing engineer. Throughout the year, I completed numerous modules including: Milling, Technical Drawing, Finishing techniques, Pneumatics, Electrical Wiring, Welding and Computer Aided Design. Throughout my time rotating through different sections, I had the opportunity to develop new skills on equipment which I had never used before. I had the mindset of focusing on attention to detail and never considering “good enough” as an option.

“After completing all the modules, we were given the opportunity to learn new skills on sections which we had not previously worked. For me this included CNC machines which gave me a unique insight into the programming and operation of this equipment. An understanding of how high-quality components within industry are manufactured was therefore gained, giving me an appreciation for how precision components on manufacturing equipment can be made.

“As part of my apprenticeship, I am progressing through the different departments within Amtico. I am developing a practical understanding of the role each department has within the company, in relation to producing the final product. I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to have already been in CAD, Engineering, Health & Safety and Finishing. Each department has taught me how the departments are run and the processes which happen within them. I have taken forward the knowledge and fundamental understanding gained and built upon them to help benefit the next department that I move to. I feel I have achieved this, and it has resulted in numerous departmental managers asking me to re-join the department to assist when required. By the end of my apprenticeship I hope to have knowledge of every department within manufacturing and have a solid overall understanding of how the facility and functions work, as well as how different departments depend on each other.”

Pictured above: (left) James with Steve Palmer, David Bridgens and Lee Beesley of MGTS, (right) James with Jim Morris – Continuous Improvement Manager, Amtico.