Enthusiasm among new people joining Network Rail’s apprenticeship scheme is helping attract more people to the industry.
It’s hard work but railway banter and humour keep the new recruits going. One apprentice even made it to an assessment the day after a car accident so determined was he not to miss out.
Says Jamie Mills, a 22 year-old track maintenance apprentice based in Brighton, ‘I saw the scheme advertised and decided to apply. I like working with things and wanted to find out more. There are so many opportunities within Network Rail and I want to do well. I came to the assessment day on crutches after being hit by a car and was determined to pass.
‘You can work towards great qualifications and I would recommend the apprenticeship scheme to anyone who was thinking of applying.’
Happily the scheme is attracting women who take any criticism of their choice of career in their stride. Kelsey Everton is a 19 year- old 2nd year apprentice based at Sandwell and Dudley depot in the West Midlands. She is now learning electrification and plant.
Says Kelsey, ‘I’d like to eventually teach on the apprenticeship scheme, it’s been a great experience. There has been a lot of hard work but I have made some good friends and there has been some good banter. There are only six girls on the course in my year but it’s been a good experience. My friends think it’s a little weird that I am doing this but I would urge them – and anyone else – to do it.’