A Week In the Life Of Keiron – Apprentice Service Engineer
The 12th annual National Apprentice Week 2019 is taking place from the 4th to the 8th March 2019. The purpose of the week is to highlight and celebrate the impact of apprenticeships on individuals, employers and the economy. Having had several apprentices successfully join and progress through our engineering department at YPS, we always champion the benefits of apprentices!
To mark the event this year, we decided to take a closer look at what being an apprentice at YPS actually involves, by shining a spotlight on a typical week for our latest recruit, Keiron Luty.
Name: Keiron Luty
Date Joined YPS: 1st November 2016
Education: Studying a Level 3 BTEC in Electrical Engineering at Bradford College. I have also completed a Mechanical Engineering BTEC.
Monday 18th February 2019:
Every Monday I attend college for eight hours, starting at 8.30am. Firstly I have an engineering maths class for an hour and a half, which is followed by an Analogue Electrics class, where we are currently building noise filters. The afternoon this week comprised of a three hour lecture on electrical machines and 3 phase motors. I really enjoyed studying the 3 phase motors because I can relate this to some work I’ve been doing at YPS. Once college was finished for the day, I headed home and worked on my ongoing project, which is a making a door lock and keypad that can be remotely controlled by a mobile phone.
Tuesday 19th February 2019:
On Tuesday I was back at YPS in the workshop, working with George who is one of the service engineers here. We were running production on a shrink wrapping line, wrapping product samples for a prospective customer, which were cardboard boxes. We had to get the settings absolutely exact to make sure the boxes were totally enclosed in film and therefore completely waterproof. At the end of the day we shipped the samples off to the customer for approval.
Wednesday 20th February 2019 and Thursday 21st February 2019:
Both Wednesday and Thursday were really enjoyable! I was on site both days at one of the leading wooden floor manufacturers in the UK. I had to disconnect the shrink wrapping equipment we had loaned them ready for transport back to YPS, then I set about installing their new equipment, whilst supervised by our service engineer Bob Rooney. The customer had bought an inline sleeve wrapper and shrink tunnel, both of which I have spent the last few months refurbishing. The refurb process involved completely stripping the machines down, moving the electrical cabinet from one side to another to fit the handing of the customer’s existing equipment and rewiring all the cables, belt controls and air lines that drive the sealing head on the powered cylinder. I also completed a slight modification by adding a light curtain sensor and installed two new belts and new bearings. All the hard work was worth it when I got to see the line all working, fully tested and signed off by the customer, who was really happy. I left site on Thursday feeling really accomplished.
Friday 22nd February 2019:
On Friday I spent the morning helping to prepare for Packaging Innovations, an exhibition we were attending the following week down at the NEC. We were displaying several shrink wrapping machines and a stretch wrapper on our stand, which all needed carefully packaging up for the journey and loading safely and securely for shipment. I’m pleased to say that everything made it to our stand in perfect condition!
On Friday afternoon I was busy servicing some of our customer’s equipment on site in our workshop. The customer sent the machines in to have them generally cleaned up, maintained and for some rollers to be replaced, ready to be shipped back on Monday morning.
What inspired you to start an apprenticeship in engineering?
Keiron: I’ve always liked working with my hands and fixing things. When I left school I felt well suited to mechanical engineering because of its practical nature, but I moved on to the electrical engineering apprenticeship because it challenged me more, gave me more opportunities to solve problems and opened up possibilities like programming.
What do you love most about working at YPS?
Keiron: I feel really valued and looked after here – we’re all like one big family. Plus, working at Yorkshire Packaging offers me some great opportunities to see the things I’ve learnt at college in a live operational setting, so working here really compliments my studying and brings it to life. Another aspect I enjoy is the customer satisfaction you see whilst working here and the pride it gives you – finishing a job and spotting the smile on the customer’s face at the end is great.
What are your aspirations for the future?
Keiron: I’m just looking forward to gaining all the skills I need to have a full and varied career in engineering and to tackling more and more projects of increasing complexity.
What was the biggest challenge you encountered this week?
Keiron: It has to be installing the machines I refurbed. I was quite anxious about getting every detail right because it was the culmination of so many month’s work!
And your highlight of the week?
Keiron: Again it would have to be the installation I completed! It was hard but it was very rewarding. I enjoyed the opportunity to get out of the YPS workshop and on site as well as the chance to learn a few new electrical skills from Bob who was accompanying me.