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Get Fired Up Celebrates 10 Year Anniversary
Added 03/03/2017
This month to mark #NAW2017 we talk to Lee Wakelin, Design Estimator/CAD Designer at the Thompson Group who started off his career in the industry as an apprentice on the 'Get Fired Up' scheme

Can you tell us about your current role?

I am currently working within estimating, CAD design and sales on varied project sizes. I am part of the process from the get-go (when it arrives on my desk as a tender) through to completion and handover of the job to a customer. It is great to be part of the project life-cycle.

You graduated almost 10 years ago - What has been your highlight?

Working on Resorts World Birmingham. Resorts World is an outlet shopping in the West Midlands. The shopping, dining, and Cineworld within the complex now attract hundreds of thousands of people a year. Seeing the project go from a plot of land, to a complete building with large working Fire alarm & PA/VA systems throughout. I take great pride in telling family & friends "I have been part of this".

What did you gain from doing your apprenticeship with Gent?

I gained the respect from co-workers and the people within Gent as the course progressed. By passing the exams, it meant that I achieved better grades than when I left school. It helped opened doors for me and keep me focused.
The apprenticeship also helped me build a better understanding of what the industry is all about. It provided an ideal foundation. I also learned to appreciate what is expected from individuals when they work solo or in a team. I have also built up a solid network of friends that work within the industry.

What would you say to a young person thinking of taking an apprenticeship?

In the early stages, it is essential to share and help each other out on site or in an office. By sharing experiences on how you solved something, it educates others and builds up a better understanding. This helps massively if you face a less straight forward project. Remember and ALWAYS ask questions to something don’t understand, don’t worry about getting things wrong in one subject you will excel in another, Stick with it - it is worth it in the end!

Looking For A New and Exciting Apprenticeship?

The Get Fired Up Scheme provides you with a structured and interesting career in the Fire Industry.

Learn new skills as you spend time in college, be trained and get paid with one of the Gent 24 System Integrators.

Visit our dedicated web page today!