Dawson Shanahan welcomes fresh batch of apprentices in 2018

Precision engineering specialist Dawson Shanahan is in its third year of running an engineering apprenticeship scheme and is once again welcoming applicants.

Dawson Shanahan is expanding the engineering apprenticeship scheme it runs at its Welshpool headquarters. The company, a specialist in cold forming and CNC machining, already has nine apprentices and will add up to four more this summer.

The recruitment process will start at a company open day in February 2018. After this, candidates go through an increasingly challenging interview process and a test. The most promising are invited back for a week’s work experience – with the top three or four being taken on permanently.

The scheme can lead to a variety of qualifications, and has different entry levels. While most candidates join after their GCSEs, some may already have finished A-levels.

“It encourages local schools to see us as a preferred employer,” said Ken Toop, senior process development engineer at Dawson Shanahan, who is in charge of apprentice training. “It’s a good way to promote engineering in the area and it helps us source the various skills that will further enhance our operations.”

In their first year, apprentices spend three days a week at college; in the second year this drops to one day as they spend more time in different departments and in the company’s training school learning key theory – including engineering drawing – and technical skills such as speeds and feeds.

The training school is a separate area within the factory dedicated to apprentice training. As well as having classroom facilities, it includes a range of equipment including a new CNC wire-eroding machine. In future, the school will also be used to help existing staff members improve their skills.

The apprenticeship scheme has already produced two time-served apprentices, who now work full-time in the toolroom.

Dawson Shanahan www.dawson-shanahan.co.uk/engineering-apprentice

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Dawson Shanahan

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