Apprentice, Body Engineering, Early Careers, Electrical Engineering, Engineering, Hints and Tips, Home Page, People, Technology, United Kingdom, Who We Are

“Physical training taught me that hard work and perseverance always pays off and that failure is just a route to success.”

Leah, Jaguar Land Rover degree apprentice, currently on her 6th-year placement in Electrification Services. In her spare time, Leah loves to train and regularly competes in Olympic Weightlifting and CrossFit.

Her top tip for you is ‘Back yourself and take time to understand your personal strengths and weaknesses. Think about the value that these skills will bring to Jaguar Land Rover and its mission.’

We recently conducted a short interview to found out a little bit more about Leah, both in and out of Jaguar Land Rover.

Q: What position did you start in and what is your position now? Please describe your current responsibilities. 

I am a 6th-year AEP Degree Apprentice and I am currently on placement in Electrification Services, whose mission is to improve the EV ownership experience for customers through services. I am specifically focussing on improving the accessibility of charging infrastructure, which requires understanding the needs of those traditionally excluded from the EV ownership experience and creating a solution to not only help the exception but improve the experience for everyone. I joined Jaguar Land Rover in my home department of Vehicle Safety, where I essentially crashed cars; planning and coordinating full vehicle and component tests to ensure the safety of our vehicles. I have had the pleasure of being involved in several other areas of the business on placements within Special Vehicle Operations, Critical Concerns, Manufacturing, and Circular Economy.

Q: Are you involved in any other projects / networks? If so, please describe what they are and what your contributions are. 

SHINE Network – I recently joined as a participator to reduce assumptions when designing for inclusivity. The network supports colleagues with disabilities, whether hidden, visible or both.

Women in Engineering – I attend their annual conference, where they aim to accelerate an inclusive future for women in engineering.

Q: What do you like about working here?

It is exciting to be involved with the company during such a huge change toward electrification and sustainability. The people I work with are truly passionate about their work and are invested in my growth.

Q: What are your career aspirations? Do you feel that you get the necessary support from your current management / department to help achieve your learning & development goal? 

I see myself moving to a management role within the business, I feel I am a natural leader and have the wider knowledge to understand the bigger picture of the company. There are not enough females in this industry, so I want to encourage more young women to join the sector by acting as a role model. I would like to mentor and guide others to becoming the best version of themselves both in Jaguar Land Rover and life too. I would love the opportunity to work overseas at some point, so if the opportunity were to present itself I would work to make it happen. I think the people around me are invested in my growth, so if I work hard to achieve this, then it will be possible.

Q: Describe your current team / department, and what makes it stand out from our competition? 

The common theme amongst the teams I have been in is their passion for the work they are undertaking. The team I am in now is truly passionate about improving the charging experience for customers and understands that this is vital for the success of the business. This belief will make the team work harder and more efficiently to achieve their objectives.

Q: Tell us 3 interesting facts about yourself.

In my spare time, I love to train and compete in Olympic Weightlifting and CrossFit, and I am a qualified personal trainer. Lifting is a huge passion of mine and is where most of my spare time goes. The gym teaches me that hard work and perseverance pays off and that failure is just a route to success. It also acts as stress relief on those busy work weeks!

Last year I completed some of my first solo travel trips abroad! My favourite place I have travelled to is Costa Rica, although I got stuck in customs on the way back due to some apparent dodgy fingerprints!

I also own a paddleboard that I take out with friends in the warmer months to take some time away from Instagram scrolling and into nature.

Q: What hints and tips can you share with the potential candidates who are going through the application / interview process? 

I was incredibly nervous when submitting my application, to the point that I nearly didn’t submit it as I thought ‘I wasn’t good enough’. Now I have taken time to understand my capabilities and value within the company, with some incredible mentors along the way. My biggest piece of advice is to back yourself and take time to understand your personal strengths and weaknesses. Think about the value that these skills will bring to Jaguar Land Rover and its mission.

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Apprentice, Engineering

“Working hands on with some of our best products is what inspires me the most.”

“As an apprentice training to be a Vehicle Technician at Jaguar Land Rover, I am inspired by working in an environment full of variously skilled people, who I can learn something new off to accelerate my learning and knowledge. Working hands on with some of our best products is what inspires me the most, knowing we can find innovative solutions to ensure the vehicles we produce are up to the best standard possible, following in that modern luxury step.

The future of JLR is what excites me most as we continue our journey into the modern luxury world. The new developments and designs all around the business ensure we are constantly learning, adapting and facing new, exciting challenges, allowing us to make a great impact and achieve our goals, no matter how big or small that challenge may be.”

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Apprentice, Business Area, Early Careers, Engineering, Home Page, Technology

The key thing I’ve really enjoyed is feeling trusted and valued by my team

“I started my Engineering Degree Apprenticeship at the age of 22 – after studying robotics at Uni. I’ve worked on a number of projects during the programme – including four years in the Safety Team and have been a mentor to younger apprentices. Since finishing my degree, I have now secured a role as a CAD/AVA engineer. This is perfect for me – I love CAD and enjoy problem solving and working out how components integrate logically into our vehicles.

One of the key challenges for me during my apprenticeship was my confidence levels and self-belief. I am a shy and quite self-critical person and over the years with Jaguar Land Rover – through presenting, mentoring, and networking – I have really learnt how to push myself and become a much more confident person. My managers have always understood my personality and supported & guided me throughout the programme.

The key things I’ve really enjoyed is feeling trusted and valued by my team – and being given the freedom to do the work needed. I’ve also really enjoyed mentoring colleagues – it’s great when you see other apprentices develop in their CAD and technical skills and go from strength to strength.

The apprenticeship was the best move I’ve made – you are trusted and get to work on real projects whilst gaining a degree. My only regret – I wish I’d heard about it earlier!”

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Apprentice, Business Area, Early Careers, Engineering, Home Page, People

I’m gaining a high level of experience – it really has been my dream job

‘My father, who is very business minded, encouraged me to apply for an Apprenticeship rather than just go to Uni. It felt like the right thing to so and I applied to Jaguar Land Rover.

From initial application through to the assessment day – the process was efficient. The induction to the company was outstanding – and it was quite surreal to see what the business is working on.

I’m halfway through my Apprenticeship and I’m gaining a high level of experience – it really has been my dream job. Its challenging work and the amount I am learning is amazing – but I’m proud of what I’m achieving.

One of the highlights of my time here has been meeting my team. My supervisor is incredibly supportive, and I feel trusted and respected by everyone. At times I forget I’m an Apprentice. My advice to anyone thinking of applying – be flexible and openminded. There are so many opportunities here if you’ve got the abilities and mindset to succeed.’

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Apprentice, Business Area, Early Careers, Engineering, Home Page, Software

I learn things I wouldn’t be taught in a classroom environment

‘You really do experience the best of both worlds on a Degree Apprenticeship – gaining real industry experience whilst gaining a brilliant qualification.

So far, the programme has been engaging and interesting. People in my team share their knowledge about their roles – and I learn things I wouldn’t be taught in a classroom environment. They share information and skills that allow me to develop the projects and tasks I’m involved in. Giving up their time to do this speaks volumes.

At the moment I’ve been assigned to a programming project so that I can get familiar with the software we use. It’s a great learning curve as I had no knowledge of this area before and have been given the time to research everything, I need to carry out the project effectively.

I’ve realised I’ve got to be really organised on the apprenticeship. When working in the office I can’t forget about my Uni work or assignment deadlines. It’s important to constantly keep on top of things. I’ve also taught myself to be patient and not rush projects as there are going to be so many amazing opportunities throughout the programme.

I’ve had some great support in my first year and have been in the office more that I’d expected – which is great. This year for me is all about settling in and learning from my team. I’m looking forward to getting involved in more projects and placements. The apprenticeship matures you and, being around professionals every day, allows you to develop in a business role much earlier than you would if you are just at Uni. A degree from the University of Warwick, a salary and world class industry experience – what else could you ask for in an apprenticeship’

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