UCW and GKN Aerospace Degree Apprentice, Emily

Emily: A Rising Aerospace Engineering Star with a Passion for Sustainability 


How can you become an Aerospace Engineering Degree Apprentice?

Meet Emily, a dedicated and driven individual who is currently embarking on a 4-year degree apprenticeship in Aerospace Engineering (Manufacturing pathway) with the esteemed GKN Aerospace. We recently caught up with her to find out more about her journey with UCW. 

When asked about her decision to pursue an apprenticeship, Emily told us “I decided to do an apprenticeship instead of going to university as I thought it was the best of both worlds,” she explains. “I could get a degree whilst working and get valuable experience in the engineering sector!”  

The opportunity to explore various departments within GKN Aerospace through multiple placements stood out to Emily. She elaborates, “I liked how during the apprenticeship there are multiple placements in the company, meaning I could get experience in different departments before settling on the one I liked most.” This flexibility allowed Emily to really identify her interests and find her niche within the aerospace industry. 

Emily also emphasises the financial benefits of a degree apprenticeship, stating, “It’s amazing that degree apprentices can get a full university degree fully funded, whilst also getting paid!”  

Initially torn between various academic pathways, Emily found herself drawn to engineering after engaging in virtual work experiences during lockdown. “I then realised I could combine my interests in the subjects of physics, geography, and the environment within engineering, by potentially helping to decarbonise the aerospace industry!” Emily shares. Her desire to contribute to a sustainable future for the aerospace sector propelled her towards the field of Aerospace Engineering. 

As Emily reflects on her apprenticeship experience, she highlights the practical aspects that have stood out to her. “I enjoyed being able to complete some of the practical level 2 units,” she says, recounting experiences of welding and crafting composite parts. These hands-on activities have empowered Emily to embrace new challenges and expand her skill set. 

Emily also commends the support she has received from University Centre Weston. “The support has been great from the staff at UCW,” she acknowledges. Whether it’s her helpful tutor or the dedicated wellbeing team, Emily’s journey has been enriched by the supportive network that makes up UCW.  

With aspirations firmly grounded in sustainability and innovation, Emily envisions a future in projects like the H2GEAR initiative. She expresses her interest in “sustainability and cutting down on aircraft emissions.”   

Emily’s advice to those considering an Engineering Apprenticeship with UCW or a similar placement is extremely positive. “My advice would be to just apply if you are even slightly interested in doing an apprenticeship!” she says. Drawing from her own experience, Emily encourages potential applicants not to let uncertainty hold them back. “It is definitely better to apply to various apprenticeships than to regret not applying at all!” 

Overall, Emily’s journey as an Aerospace Engineering Degree Apprentice exemplifies the opportunities, growth, and rewards that await those interested in studying here at University Centre Weston.  

Her enthusiasm for sustainability, her dedication to hands-on learning, and her wise advice serve as an inspiration to current and future students alike. With individuals like Emily at the forefront, the future of aerospace engineering looks brighter than ever. 

To find out more about Engineering Degree Apprenticeships at UCW, click here.