Ford focus on skills

Posted on 1 Oct 2010 by The Manufacturer

Supporting skills development for the future of the automotive industry, Ford CEO Alan Mulally included a visit to CEME in his whistle-stop UK tour this week.

On Tuesday September 28, following his address to delegates attending the annual CBI (Confederation of British Industry) lecture the previous evening Mulally visited CEME (Centre for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence) at its Thames Gateway campus.

CEME is an independent charitable organisation which works with business and education to increase the contribution of industry to the London economy and the nation as a whole. The impressive modern campus provides existing and start-up companies in the London area the chance to use state of the art facilities and training resources to build business resilience. CEME also works with schools and colleges nationwide to provide a London based training and education environment for apprenticeship day release and other forms of training.

The inclusion of a visit to CEME in the Ford CEOs busy schedule is testament to the importance Mulally places on the development of skills for the future of automotive engineering in the UK. Since its founding in 2003 CEME have assisted in the training of hundreds of Ford apprentices and the charity’s CEO Bill Williams commented during the visit: “This is a wonderful opportunity to brief the head of one of the world’s greatest manufacturing and engineering companies on what CEME has already achieved. Mr Mulally was clearly deeply interested in what we do for Ford, and also for the wider engineering and manufacturing community in London. He also commented on how impressed he was to see a successful public partnership delivering great results.”

As part of the tour, Mr Mulally met Ford apprentices receiving training in the engineering workshops and also met A-Level students from Warren School in Barking and Dagenham who were using the cutting edge design equipment in the CEME Skills Centre. More than 2,000 primary and secondary school students from schools across London Thames Gateway have already benefited from learning new skills at CEME. Mr Mulally hoped that some of those he spoke to would aspire to working for Ford.