Division to help engineer careers

Kelly Scott, from WD Close, AIS Connect Trainees Bradley Clarke (16), Jack Peters (16) and Callum Turnbull (19) with Dave Bowyer from AIS Connect.

Kelly Scott, from WD Close, AIS Connect Trainees Bradley Clarke (16), Jack Peters (16) and Callum Turnbull (19) with Dave Bowyer from AIS Connect.

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A new division has been launched aiming to revolutionise support for young engineers of the future.

Training specialist AIS, based in North Shields, has launched AIS Connect to connect industry with young talent to help plug the UK’s skills gaps while preparing and inspiring youngsters to take their first steps into careers in engineering, manufacturing, construction, oil and gas, nuclear and the wind sector.

The division will offer a range of full-time and part-time programmes with a range of construction, welding, scaffolding, onshore/offshore engineering traineeships and apprenticeship programmes.

Heavy-engineering giant WD Close is one of the backers of the programme, with three AIS Connect trainees working at its riverside facility on the site of the former Swan Hunter shipyard.

Kelly Scott, from WD Close, said: “We have ambitious plans to expand our business over the next few years, but finding the right skilled personnel to help us achieve this growth is a challenge.

“AIS Connect has worked closely with us to understand our needs and are tailoring training programmes to fit.”

Dave Bowyer, director of skills and education at AIS, said: “Industry keeps telling us that many young people entering the jobs market for the first time simply don’t have relevant skills or experience.

“As a result, young people are struggling to get onto the career ladder.

“At the same time, employers can’t find the right people to plug these gaps.

“We want to positively change this situation for the better.”

“We’re putting employers at the heart of every programme we develop and are listening to what they need: motivated, proactive, enthusiastic workers with the right competencies to be productive from day one.

“Our courses will deliver this by instilling a strong work ethic and training youngsters in practical skills much in demand like basic engineering, fabrication and welding so they are work ready.”