Bright future for trainees

Phil Robinson and Becky Watson who beat off competition from 100 other young people to secure their places on the East Durham Engineering Forum trainee scheme
Phil Robinson and Becky Watson who beat off competition from 100 other young people to secure their places on the East Durham Engineering Forum trainee scheme

THE future looks bright for 10 young people after they beat off tough competition to win trainee positions with a range of manufacturing firms.

The lucky candidates have taken on positions at a number of Peterlee firms including manufacturer NSK Bearings Europe, electronics company Seaward, articulated truck giant Caterpillar, furniture fittings manufacture BHK UK and aluminium, steel product manufacturer D W Marshall, as well as Horden-based heavy fabrication company Actem.

The successful trainees had to undergo a rigorous selection process including a half-day assessment programme and panel interviews as part of a scheme by East Durham Engineering Forum (EDEF).

They are working towards recognised NVQs with East Durham College and New College Durham and have been trained in health and safety, manual handling, principles of lean manufacturing, visual management and operative training for production processes.

Before winning his place as a manufacturing trainee with NSK Bearings Europe, 19-year-old Phil Robinson had been made redundant from a demolition firm due to the economic downturn.

Becky Watson, 18, was expected to pursue a career in childcare before taking up her position as a trainee at nearby Seaward Electronics.

The scheme has won praise from Easington MP Grahame Morris who said: “Regionally, we have a serious issue with youth unemployment with one in three 18 to 24-year-olds looking for work.

“I would like to offer my congratulations to the 10 young people who have won trainee positions and I would like to wish them all the best in their future careers.”