Blog

Apprentice, Body Engineering, DFT, Electrical Engineering, Engineering, People, Software, Technology

Meet Our Pioneering Apprentices – Day 4 of 5

Mihaela Botnariuc successfully completed her Degree Apprenticeship in August 2018 and is now a Digital Optimisation Engineer in our Body Engineering team. As part of her technical training Mihaela gained a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Engineering from the University of Warwick, and is currently working towards a Master’s level qualification through our Technical Accreditation Scheme.

“In Body Engineering we are responsible for delivering almost everything the customer can see and touch on a vehicle. I work with the seating team to create digital models and tools that make our processes more efficient and enhance the overall quality of our products”.

“Our cars are beautiful, but to complete the package they require brilliant engineering. Even something as simple as choosing a material can be incredibly complex; we look at things like safety and crash performance, as well how the material looks, feels, and responds to customer usage over the lifetime of the vehicle”.

“At school I enjoyed the sciences, Maths, Art and Textiles, and saw myself going to university to study Mathematics. I didn’t know what I wanted to do afterwards and where I would apply my Maths degree once I obtained it. This was partly due to a lack of knowledge and experience of the wide applications of skills in the workplace.”

“I chose the Apprenticeship with Jaguar Land Rover because of my interest in STEM subjects and design. During the apprenticeship I had the opportunity to work on a variety of projects and experience the vast number of areas that are involved in developing our cars. This allowed me to grow my understanding and make a more informed decision about which areas were most suited to my interests and strengths.”

“My role involves both working alone, investigating and delivering solutions for the teams I work with, and being part of a team trying to understand our internal customer requirements and how those can be met. Therefore being a good communicator is important when interacting in teams and with colleagues whose requirements I am trying to meet. Independent thinking is also crucial when delivering solutions to customers.”

“I enjoy taking on new challenges and problem solving, which is essential for my role. In a typical week I work on a variety of projects including user trials, research projects, and projects that have Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) or Computer Aided Design (CAD) requirements. All this helps to meet design and aesthetic requirements for the components, while also balancing that with internal engineering standards for quality and safety.”

Mihaela is on the Degree Apprentice programme. To find out more about the Advanced, Higher and Degree Apprentice programmes we currently offer at Jaguar Land Rover, check out our careers website.

Apprentice, Autonomous, DFT, Early Careers, Electrical Engineering, Electrified, Engineering, People, Software, Who We Are

Meet Our Pioneering Apprentices – Day 3 of 5

Simon FitzGerald is a Fifth Year Degree Apprentice in Electrical Engineering. Originally from an IT background, Simon is now an experienced member of our electrical team, and is working towards a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Warwick.

“For the past couple of years I have delivered the Interior Sensing Platform (ISP), ensuring high quality software delivery from suppliers, as well as making sure we have a robust plan to resolve technical issues. I planned the scope and delivery of upcoming software releases, analysing changes in requirements, resolving technical issues and tracking actions at a project level.”

“After leaving college I completed an IT apprenticeship and worked as an IT engineer for a few years. This served me well as it offered further learning opportunities and the prospect of real work with earning potential. Upon completing my IT apprenticeship, I soon felt I was lacking a challenge at work and began looking at future prospects including a new job role, university and higher apprenticeships.”

“The Jaguar Land Rover programme was absolutely the best option for me. I was excited to learn new skills that would be relevant to my career in engineering, whilst being challenged and rewarded for my efforts every day. Back then there wasn’t such a wide range of apprenticeships to choose from, so it’s been great to see the growth in popularity over the last five years.”

“What advice would I give to my younger self? ‘Go for it!’ In my experience, you will be rewarded for being pro-active in seeking out new opportunities and asking challenging questions both inside and outside the organisation. Initially I was more reluctant to speak up, particularly when dealing with suppliers. It was a daunting prospect to challenge engineers far more experienced than myself on what they were delivering. I was cautious about being seen as inexperienced, but the culture here really rewards that technical curiosity and drive. My professionalism and determination to improve our products has been met with incredible support and as a result I have achieved more than I ever thought possible.”

“What I love most about Jaguar Land Rover is the challenges that I face daily in this organisation. Every day is different, enabling me to develop and hone new skills in constructive and valuable ways.” 

Simon is on the Degree Apprentice programme. To find out more about the Advanced, Higher and Degree Apprentice programmes we currently offer at Jaguar Land Rover, check out our careers website.

Apprentice, Body Engineering, Early Careers, Engineering, Featured-Lower, People, Who We Are

A day in the life of a second year apprentice


Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Yassmine, I am a second year degree apprentice with body engineering within the cockpit and climate team.

What does your typical day look like?

I am in the second year of my degree apprenticeship which means I spend one day a week at college and the rest at work. At college I am working on completing my foundation degree in engineering. This includes subjects such as mathematics, electronics, materials and CAE (computer aided engineering). My day to day work mainly consists of using a software called CATIA to do computer aided design. The project I am currently working on is redesigning a new speaker grille to be situated on the centre of the dashboard. This consists of scoping the project by comparing the component to existing JLR and competitor products, discussing design features with senior members of the cockpit and climate team, and also looking into materials, mechanics and manufacturing processes.

That sounds interesting, and working on future products…

Yeah, It’s very interesting. I find it really exciting that I am only in my second year and I am already working on components that could be used in future vehicles that haven’t been released yet.

What led you to an apprenticeship at Jaguar Land Rover?

I went to a standard sixth form where my goal was to complete my A-levels and go to university – as had been my plan for my whole secondary school life. However, after not achieving the grades I wanted, I moved to UTC Oxfordshire where I was introduced to the idea of an apprenticeship.

I still applied to university, but also found out about the degree apprenticeship scheme that Jaguar Land Rover offered. This  intrigued me as I’d have the opportunity to get six years of technical experience working in an engineering role, a competitive salary, a bachelor’s degree in applied engineering from the University of Warwick (which was my University of preference anyway) and a job in the automotive industry.

What did you study at UTC Oxfordshire?

I studied a level 3 BTEC in engineering in which I received a triple distinction star, and A-level mathematics where I received an A. The entry requirements for the degree apprenticeship were D*D*D* and at least a C in mathematics so I was overjoyed when I received the grades I did.

How does university fit into your work life?

I will be starting at the University of Warwick in September of this year where I will do a week at university, followed by 5 weeks at JLR. This will continue for the remaining four years of my apprenticeship. I am really looking forward to this as, although I know it will be challenging, I want to progress my engineering knowledge to a more professional level and use this to help me at work.

I will need to attend lectures and complete assignments and exams during this time whilst also working, so I know that this is going to be very difficult. However I do not expect anything to be easy on this scheme, after all being part of such a prestigious apprenticeship is going to come with some hurdles which I am prepared to face.

You recently spoke at the Duke of York awards, how did that come about?

Yes that’s right, whilst I was at UTC Oxfordshire I worked on obtaining a gold Duke of York award by documenting and proving the engineering knowledge and experience I had worked for over the past couple of years. I was then awarded with a gold Duke of York award in 2017 at St James’ Palace in London. As well as this, I was also given an outstanding achievement award for Women in Engineering alongside 3 other girls from my college in the same event which was a pleasant surprise for us.

In January of 2019, representatives from the Baker Dearing Trust reached out to UTC Oxfordshire to invite us back to the Duke of York Awards to speak as UTC alumni. I attended this on the 30th January where I spoke about how the UTC helped me get to where I am now, and why I chose the degree apprenticeship route with Jaguar Land Rover.

Are you enjoying your Apprenticeship?

I really do enjoy it, I find exceptionally interesting and I’m learning and developing different skills every day. Having spent a year and a half on the apprenticeship scheme I cannot possibly imagine having followed a different route. This is because after gaining independence and a respectful role in a business such as this one I could not imagine myself going back to full time education as this would feel like backtracking to me.

I am looking forward to the remainder of my apprenticeship where I will be able to start studying for my Bachelor’s degree in applied engineering from the University of Warwick, as well as going on placement within other engineering departments at Jaguar Land Rover.

What advice would you give to someone considering options after school?

To me, this opportunity was a no-brainer! On the one hand, I had the option of going to university and studying full time, getting a degree within 3-4 years, and ending up in a lot of debt. On the other hand was this apprenticeship scheme which would take 6 years where I would get experience working in an engineering role, a generous salary, a fully funded degree from a Russell Group university, and the beginnings of a career.

I would suggest making sure you look into every available pathway and the specific benefits they could have for you. For the vast majority of my education I was focused on going down the standard University route and it was only within the last six months or so of my education that I decided on doing an apprenticeship and I’m so glad that I did. A degree apprenticeship at Jaguar Land Rover was a great option for me.


Apprentice, Body Engineering, Early Careers, Engineering, Featured-Lower, Learning and Development, People, Who We Are

Life of a Jaguar Land Rover Apprentice, What You Need to Know.

You’re probably thinking of going to university. Or maybe you’re about to leave the family nest, in search of education and an adventure. I certainly know that feeling. I’m sure you’re thinking about how to put your best foot forward as you step out into the big bad world, how to get the best out of your chosen career and how to best reach your potential.

Let me introduce myself, and I’ll share how I’m trying to do just that myself. My name is Callum, aged 20, I joined David Game College in 2017, I studied A-level maths and as I grew into the year, I found the concept of taking out enormous loans to further my education less and less enticing. In addition, through the variety of voluntary projects I’ve been involved in, I discovered how satisfying it is to work with your hands; building, making, creating and decided I wanted to continue learning in this way.

I began investigating apprenticeships in early October 2017.

An apprenticeship, in case you don’t know, is a course of study you can take under the employment of a business or institution, where you work and study for recognised qualifications. You’ll receive on-the-job training for your chosen career path, and get paid for your time. In addition to gaining an income and the associated responsibilities of this (paying for your board and lodgings for one) I found there were many, many benefits to studying this way, a debt-free degree being foremost among them. For example, on the scheme I’ve been accepted on (Vehicle Engineering with Jaguar Land Rover) I’ll receive a BEng in Applied Engineering from the University of Warwick (one of the Russell group Universities, which has a fantastic engineering and maths department) saving me up to £80,000 over 4 years. Best of all, an Apprenticeship gives you the opportunity to learn, grow, mature and take responsibility in a working environment in a way that going to university the “normal way” just does not.

I started my apprenticeship on the 3rd of September, commencing with an induction week at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry. Here I received excellent motivational speeches, inspirational lessons on the separate design languages of Jaguar and Land Rover, and had lots of opportunities to network and make friends with my newfound workmates. I received my uniform, which I am to wear to college and work, and met my line manager, who will be responsible for my development and training for the next 6 years.

We also had two very special presentations, one by James Barclay (the Team Director of Jaguar Panasonic Racing Team) and another by the Chief Program Engineer of the brand new Jaguar I-PACE, Jaguars first All-Electric Performance SUV. I then spent the week beginning the 10th of September at Warwickshire Trident College, completing assessments, learning about the company ethos and endeavouring to create an open and inclusive learning environment.

I started my studies in September, and have so far done 3 week blocks of study in Hand Fitting and Electronics. In hand fitting I learned metalwork (the very basics of modern engineering) and in electronics I learned basic soldering techniques and how to build working electronic circuits and logic gates. The work I’m completing right now is of a difficulty between GCSE and A-Level. Next week I’ll be starting an academic block, with Material Sciences, Maths, Physics, Automotive Engineering & Electrical Engineering all on the menu.

As I write this, I’m having a week’s work experience at Gaydon (where I’ll be based as of next year) working with the ‘home department’ I’ve been assigned to. I’ve linked up with my manager and the rest of the team, I’m working with current apprentices and graduates. I get the opportunity to experience what I’ll be doing during and after my apprenticeship, learning from experienced professionals, many of whom were apprentices and so understand what it’s like starting out at a large company. I know that they’re all around to help me if I need it, as we’re all part of a team, each individual is important at Jaguar Land Rover. Using our skills and talents, to create fantastic products for our customers.

Callum,
Jaguar Land Rover Degree Apprentice.


Considering an apprenticeship?

We want to transform the automotive landscape and shape the future of mobility – so our early careers training programmes are the route to an inspired career. Each is designed to give you the ideal mix of on-the-job training and focused, classroom-based learning.

Find out more

Apprentice, Early Careers, Engineering, Manufacturing, Manufacturing Engineering, People

Meet Our Pioneering Apprentices – Day 2 of 5

Anjali Patel is a Higher Apprentice in Powertrain Test Operations. Currently in her second year of training, Anjali is working towards her Higher National Diploma (HND) and National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) Level 4, specialising in Advanced Manufacturing Engineering and training to become a Technician in our engine test team.

“A typical day for me involves working on engine test cells, using specialist software to run various tests to assess engine performance, fuel economy and emissions. Training to become a technician in Powertrain Test Operations involves moving through a number of placements in Powertrain teams at Jaguar Land Rover’s headquarters in Whitley. I also spend one day a week at the Trident College in Leamington Spa, where I attend lectures towards my HND.”

“Before Jaguar Land Rover, I attended a girls’ grammar school where the traditional route after sixth form was University. At A-Level I studied Maths, Physics, Geography and Chemistry. When exploring next steps to take with these subjects, I knew I wanted to have a career in engineering where I could explore my problem solving skills and deploy my science-based mind set. An apprenticeship has always appealed to me as I’d gain first-hand experience and practical skills by learning ‘on the job’, as well as gaining nationally recognised qualifications which would help me to progress in my career.”

“As an apprentice, I get to work alongside experienced staff who help me develop specific skills, whilst earning a wage at the same time. If university is not the right path for you, an apprenticeship will allow you to start training in a real work environment, gaining relevant skills, experience and qualifications which can lead to a successful career in your chosen field.”

“The Jaguar Land Rover programme is well structured, resourced and supported and you play a part in creating cutting-edge technology for future premium vehicles. An apprenticeship at Jaguar Land Rover will put you in charge of your career and, by moving through various departments in the business, you can explore what you enjoy and find the best route for you.”

Anjali is on the Higher Apprentice programme. To find out more about the Advanced, Higher and Degree Apprentice programmes we currently offer at Jaguar Land Rover, check out our careers website.