The Manufacturer Podcast: Skills & People Series, Episode 1 – Apprenticeships

Posted on 4 Mar 2022 by Tom St John

The editorial team return with this week's episode of The Manufacturer Podcast. This episode will focus on apprenticeships to kick off a brand new series.

Hi listener – we’re back with a new series! We’ll be turning to our attention to skills and people, and we can’t wait to see what will come of this wide ranging and multi-faceted topic series.

After a hugely fun and successful series on sustainability, the skills and people series will explore the much talk about skills gap, the need for diversity within the sector, the encouragement of younger people in to the industry and as always, the spotlight will be shone brightly on the manufacturers making strides in these departments and the experts who are offering solutions.

In this first episode, we talk to three apprentices – two of which are up in Blythe, at sheet metal fabricators Universal Wolf. In addition to them, a first year apprentice at Make UK who is currently working at Seco Tools in Redditch. Hear what these young people have to say about their experiences so far, the perceptions around apprentices and the reasons they opted to take this route in to manufacturing.

The editorial team also give their thoughts on the fantastic opportunities that apprenticeships bring, but lament false perceptions that have arisen, that often put apprenticeships as the forgotten option behind university.

Listen here


Nathan Mould and Lewis Glover– Universal Wolf

Nathan was at university initially, but decided it wasn’t for him. He’s always had a keen interest in engineering, so this felt like a good fit for him. He’s interested in different manufacturing processes and methods, and has thoroughly enjoyed learning about them. Initially, Lewis had no interest in manufacturing. He left school and entered construction, working in roofing. He then saw the call for apprentices at Universal Wolf, decided to apply and hasn’t looked back.

Universal Wolf are a sheet metal manufacturer based in the North East who are passionate about growing their own talent through their apprenticeship programme.

Aisha Mustafa – Make UK (working at Seco Tools)

Much like Lewis, Aisha wasn’t sure what pathway she wanted to go down. Young people are heavily encouraged to do the science part of STEM, so she ended up doing that for a while. It was then that she realised she enjoyed architecture, engineering, designing buildings and figuring out how things work and how they’re made. She says “It was almost like figuring out what I didn’t want to do, helped me find what I really have a passion for.”

Listen back to our previous Sustainability Series if you missed it.