As this week is National Apprenticeship Week, we caught up with one of our current apprentices, Electrical Design Engineer, George Naylor, to find out more about his apprenticeship as part of Waldeck’s Mechanical & Electrical (M&E) Building Services Design team.   

George has been working at Waldeck since 2018, where at the age of 20 we welcomed him as an Assistant Electrical Engineer as part of the M&E Team. George then enrolled onto the degree apprenticeship scheme in 2019, studying BSc Building Services Engineering at Leeds Beckett University, which he is due to complete in 2021.

Hi George! Tell us about your experience so far of doing an apprenticeship?

During my apprenticeship so far, I have been balancing University studies alongside working at Waldeck on live multi-disciplinary projects for a variety of clients.

I have been involved in a variety of projects including Energy from Waste (EfW) schemes and new-build hotels as well as retail, rail, and education sector projects.

My main roles have been to work closely within the M&E Team, carrying out the electrical tasks required on projects including, calculations, drawings, specifications, document control. Since starting at Waldeck with no previous design experience I have become proficient in using, Relux, Amtech, Revit, AutoCAD.

I have also been able to complete CPD Seminars and short courses such as BIM Essentials,  as part of the workplace learning which is a requirement of the apprenticeship. 

What first interested you in a career in construction?

I have always been interested in engineering and construction from a young age. At 16 I managed to get a placement at an electrical contractor becoming a Level 3 Electrical Installation Apprentice.

From this time the apprenticeship route has always appealed to me and therefore I moved to Waldeck as a career progression but also due to Waldeck’s employee investment commitments via training.   

What has been your personal career highlight so far?

I have really enjoyed being able to transfer my onsite skills into the role I now perform at Waldeck. Understanding the tasks which the onsite operatives need to undertake, helps in producing designs which ensure ‘buildability’. I enjoy working as part of a team at Waldeck, as well as building relationships clients and other disciplines within the projects.

Working directly with contractors on projects giving them solutions as well as gaining good feedback, on Waldeck’s quality of work, is a personal highlight.

What are your plans for the future?

As part of my Degree Apprenticeship, I will be applying to CIBSE to become an Associate Member as well as gaining Incorporate Engineer (IEng) Status, this will be a massive achievement for me and gives me a good steppingstone to becoming a Chartered Engineer (CEng).  

In September I hope to enrol onto a MSc Building Services Engineering course to further enhance my Building Services knowledge as well to gain the accredited qualification required in order to attain CEng Status.

Within Waldeck I hope to be a critical part of the M&E team and work towards project managing complex projects. I also hope to become a role model and mentor to younger engineers as I am able to offer advice on their training options to encourage future engineers in achieving their career goals.

In the face of a skills gap and lack of people choosing a career in STEM subjects, how would you inspire someone to take a similar route into the workplace?

Apprenticeships are available in a huge variety of subjects now, especially within STEM subjects. I would encourage any aspiring young person to find something which interests them and apply for apprenticeships in that field.

My personal opinion is that an apprenticeship is a good route as you are performing the job within the workplace whilst studying at college or university. The skills you learn in the workplace are beneficial to the classroom and vice versa. There is no cap on how far you can take your training or career after completing an apprenticeship.

To find out more about Waldeck’s Mechanical & Electrical Building Services Design capability, please contact George and the team by calling 08450 990285 or send George an email here.