Heading to university from college seemed like the natural path for Georgia Ashworth…until she was given an alternative to mull over.

When she started college, Georgia knew she wanted to explore a career in engineering, but as she hadn’t yet had exposure to the various roles available, she didn’t fully understand what options might be available to her and what path she might take.

Georgia, of Colne, completed a Level 3 Extended BTEC Diploma in Mechanical Engineering followed by a HNC in Mechanical Engineering.

Then, while at a Nelson and Colne College careers event, she came across Yorkshire business, Fives Landis, which was offering work experience in Quality Assurance.

The 22-year-old said: “As this was a role I hadn’t heard of before, I thought it would be a good opportunity to experience a working environment and hopefully there discover my true passion within the engineering sector.”

After completing her work experience, Georgia felt she had gained a true understanding of the different roles within the business and made the decision to pursue Quality Assurance within Fives Landis as a Degree Apprentice.

She has since completed a HND and Degree course in Manufacturing Engineering whilst completing a Level 4 NVQ.

The apprenticeship route has afforded Georgia the opportunity to gain valuable experience that could be related back into her studies whilst earning a living. 

She added: “I feel like the apprenticeship has taught me how to relate my studies into work-based scenarios and enabled me to become a well-rounded engineer.

“I love being part of the Fives Landis business and having the freedom to put my studies/knowledge into practice by implementing lean and continuous improvement projects which have a positive impact.

“The apprenticeship has also opened up new opportunities, including business trips to other companies around the world, which has expanded my knowledge and life experiences even further.

“Additionally, the apprenticeship route has helped me to develop in my personal life by providing a wage that enabled me to progress financially.”

Post apprenticeship, Georgia hopes to continue working at Fives Landis as a Quality Assurance Engineer implementing Lean Six Sigma, quality methodologies and progressing within her department.

Georgia concluded: “I am thankful to my employer for giving me the opportunity to complete an apprenticeship and for funding my HND, NVQ and Degree courses.

“Equally, my employer has developed me outside of college by giving me opportunities to expand my knowledge through additional qualifications in ISO Auditing and Lean Six Sigma Green Belt and giving me exposure to different scenarios to gain experience. I really am very grateful.”

For more information about the apprenticeship opportunities available through the Nelson and Colne College Group, visit https://www.nelson.ac.uk/apprenticeships/