Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Applied Integration Bosses Inspire a New Generation

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Applied Integration Bosses Inspire a New Generation

Article excerpt

Byline: Karen McLauchlan Deptuy Business Editor business@eveninggazette.co.uk

THE first ever apprentices of a fast-growing Stokesley firm need look no further than the company's directors for inspiration.

Having started their own careers as apprentices, bosses at Applied Integration have now recruited Jordan Wales and Craig McEvoy on three-and-ahalf year engineering apprenticeships.

Specialising in providing integration systems to a wide range of industries, including attack submarines, the firm is keen to support apprenticeship opportunities.

Directors Roy Coleman, Lee Raywood and Garry Lofthouse all began their careers as apprentices with Teesside firms and are keen to see engineers of the future benefit from a similar kick-start - and help fill a growing engineering skills gap.

Jordan and Craig are both now attending Hartlepool College full-time in the first part of their apprenticeships, which are supported by one of Applied Integration's key suppliers, engineering giant Siemens.

The new recruits have joined the systems integrators from Middlesbrough's Macmillan Academy, 18-year-old Jordan having completed his BTec level 3 in engineering, while Craig, 16, is studying his level 2 after joining straight from secondary school.

Mr Lofthouse, a former apprentice instrument technician with ICI, said: "I was one of 120 apprentices taken on by ICI at a time when there were hundreds of apprenticeships available across Teesside. They give you hands-on experience at a very young age and a chance to develop techniques that will stand you in very good stead.

"Jordan and Craig are our very first apprentices but we don't expect them to be our last. As we look to expand on the back of several exciting contract wins, we are often limited by the engineering skills shortage that we see throughout the UK and beyond.

"This is a pilot programme but we want to roll it out over forthcoming years, gradually increasing the number of apprenticeships we offer and ultimately creating a production line of talented, motivated and qualified engineers for our business.

"We want to encourage local talent to come into the engineering industry and develop what can be an exciting, challenging and lucrative career. …

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