Coleg y Cymoedd engineering apprentice lands full time spot with British Airways

An engineering learner at Coleg y Cymoedd has landed a full-time position at British Airways (BA), after impressing bosses with his qualifications and hard work during an apprenticeship.

Arjundeep Singh, 21, studied an NVQ Level 3 Engineering Manufacture – Fit & Assemble and Level 3 BTEC in Engineering at Coleg y Cymoedd as part of his apprenticeship with British Airways, achieving a double distinction * leading to him securing a permanent role at the airline.

Having always had a love of maths and physics, Arjundeep, from Cardiff, was inspired by his father’s job as a research and design engineer to pursue a career in engineering. 

While studying for his BTEC in Mechanical and Electrical Engineering at Cymoedd, he was awarded ‘Student of the Year’ and ‘Best Work’ learner award from the college, as well as ‘Apprentice of the Year’ at the Caerphilly Business Forum Awards (which he was nominated for by the college). Alongside his BTEC course, Arjundeep completed a work based NVQ Level 3 qualification at British Airways Interior Engineering, based in Caerphilly, which was the perfect fit given his interest in aviation.

After receiving his results last summer, he continued to work as an apprentice with British Airways for several months before being offered full time employment at the company, working within the materials team which handles supply chain activity.

Now, nine months into his full-time position, Arjundeep is working as a Material Administrator within the Procurement and Supply department, where he helps to action buying plans and works closely with suppliers and major stakeholders, tackling any material supply issues and ensuring compliance with procedures and safety regulations.

Speaking about his success in securing the role, Arjundeep said: “I felt very proud when I secured the position as it showed that my hard work had paid off. I’ve learnt many new skills since I’ve joined British Airways, including how to use industry systems and how to manage relationships with suppliers and stakeholders. It’s also provided me with great experience of working in a professional office and boosted my confidence.

“British Airways has presented me so many opportunities for career progression too including supporting me to complete additional qualifications. I am currently studying towards my Member of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply certificate (MCIPS).”

The former Coleg y Cymoedd ‘Apprentice Student of the Year’ says that the hands-on nature of both his BTEC and NVQ courses at the college, which have an emphasis on practical teaching around real-life situations, placed him in good stead for his apprenticeship and subsequent full-time and permanent employment with British Airways.

“My time at Coleg y Cymoedd gave me a great head start as the course explored engineering in depth with great practical elements, all while teaching me to use my initiative and problem-solve, which has been a great life lesson for the workplace.

“The state-of-the-art tools, equipment, and machinery at the college allowed me to learn what it would be really like in the industry and confirmed I wanted to work within it.

“Although it was difficult to meet my tutors in person through parts of my course, due to pandemic disruption, the college made sure learners felt supported – they really went out of their way, even driving up to British Airways just to drop off papers for my NVQ.”

Coleg y Cymoedd recognised for support of young athletes with national accreditation

Coleg y Cymoedd has become the first college in Wales to receive a national sporting accreditation that recognises organisations that go above and beyond in their efforts to support student athletes.

Coleg y Cymoedd has been awarded the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) dual career accreditation which is given to institutions that demonstrate a commitment to supporting young sportspeople to follow a dual career route – allowing them to reach their potential in education while achieving success in their sport. The college joins Swansea and Cardiff Metropolitan universities as one of only three Welsh higher education institutions with this status.

To mark its achievement, the college hosted a launch event at its Nantgarw campus which welcomed student athletes and their parents as well as guests from partner sports and education organisations to hear about the scheme and what it will mean for future learners. The evening included a talk from special guest Helen Phillips MBE, Non-Executive Chair of Commonwealth Games Wales.

Alun Davies, Dual Career Lifestyle adviser at Coleg y Cymoedd said: “The TASS accreditation is a prestigious recognition for the college and we are so proud to see that the strategies we have implemented to support our student athletes are being celebrated.

“We pride ourselves on being a place where learners’ academic and sporting goals are both fully supported, enabling them to gain qualifications alongside their sports pursuits without compromising either.

“Becoming a TASS dual career accredited site will help place Coleg y Cymoedd on the competitive path with other sporting institutes in Wales and across the border. The accreditation will also enable us to continue building connections with local sporting institutions and attract a greater number of talented athletes to the college in the future.”

Following a rigorous assessment process, Coleg y Cymoedd was awarded the accreditation in acknowledgement of the various initiatives and extra support it provides to athletes studying at its campuses. Its flexible academic policies include arranging catch up sessions with teaching staff when learners’ sports clash with lessons, access to online notes and additional resources, and even rescheduling deadlines or exam dates in exceptional circumstances.

31 talented student athletes will be selected to take part in the TASS programme at Coleg y Cymoedd, covering a diverse range of sports including but not limited to rugby, fencing, karate, gymnastics, football, netball, athletics, swimming, gymnastics, and taekwondo.

Among these learners are Welsh junior world champions who have represented Wales at the Commonwealth Games and GB Performance Squads. Each of them will receive one-one academic and lifestyle support from a qualified practitioner, with tailored plans based on their individual needs, which will depend on the nature of their sport.

They will also have access to top training facilities and advice around areas like nutrition and strength and conditioning, as well as personal development workshops focused on developing their skills and resilience.

Guy Taylor, TASS National Director, said: “TASS Dual Career Accreditation Scheme is an important measure to ensure that talented athletes are allowed the flexibility to pursue an education and enjoy a more well-rounded life. Through the programme, learners acquire skills and formal qualifications that are needed to help them find alternative careers, either alongside their sporting activities or once their sporting days are over.

“It’s important to us to recognise those institutions who place precedence on their athletes’ education. We’re delighted to be awarding TASS Dual Career Accreditation to Coleg y Cymoedd in recognition of the great policies they have in place to offer an effective and lasting dual career structure within the college.”

Aberdare

Wellington Street
Aberdare
Rhondda Cynon Taff
CF44 8EN

Nantgarw

Heol y Coleg
Parc Nantgarw
Cardiff
CF15 7QY

Rhondda

Llwynypia
Tonypandy
Rhondda Cynon Taff
CF40 2TQ

Ystrad Mynach

Twyn Road
Ystrad Mynach
Hengoed
CF82 7XR

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