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Engineering Degrees, HNCs & HNDs

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  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering HNC
  • Mechanical Engineering HND
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering HNC Full Time
  • Mechanical Engineering HNC
  • Mechanical Engineering HNC Full Time
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering HND
  • Engineering BEng (Hons)
  • Mechanical Engineering HND Full Time

Engineering Apprenticeships

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The UK is once again one of the global leads for Engineering and Manufacture. Our innovation and high quality, together with efficient timescales of delivery make us stand out. The East of England is a powerhouse for the UK economy much of which comes from the outstanding engineering companies in the region.

At West Suffolk College we offer organisations and learners the chance to learn and develop the skills required to ensure engineering remains prominent in the local area. We offer Level 2 to Level 6 and work with employers across many different pathways such as Mechanical, Electrical, Electronic, Maintenance, Welding, Tool Making, Design, Installation etc. Our excellent facilities allow for learning to be conducted in a very supportive environment and our work based team helps to embed that classroom knowledge fully in the workplace.

Engineering Courses for School Leavers

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Engineering at West Suffolk College provides a practical and theoretical introduction to mechanical and electronic engineering, computer aided drawing and microprocessing. You’ll get the skills to help solve the problems of tomorrow – from how aircraft work to the electronics in your mobile phone.

The Level 3 course could earn you enough UCAS points to study engineering at any UK university or take an advanced apprenticeship, working with an engineering firm and career off to an early start.

Not sure? No problem

Choosing what to study can be challenging. Speak to one of our advisors to find out what your options are.

Advice & Help Centre

Overview of apprenticeship

This Apprenticeship allows an Apprentice to develop the skills, knowledge and behaviour to be a fully competent General Welder who will be competent in manual welding.  Apprentices can work in a range of industries from automotive, general fabrication, transport, produce components for cars, buildings and many other industry requirements.  This is an essential occupation that requires high quality and accuracy often doing a complex range of manual welding skills.

Welding is a way to make high strength joints between two or more parts. General Welders use high electrical energy to form an arc. Manual dexterity is essential in controlling the arc, which is used to melt metals, allowing them to fuse together to form a structurally sound weld.

Welding is used extensively and in almost every sector of industry. There is a high demand for skilled General Welders in areas such as: automotive, marine, transport, general fabrication, construction and many more. General Welders produce items like components for cars; ships; rail vehicles; simple metallic containers; and steelwork for bridges, buildings and gantries. Welding is a safety critical occupation and every welder takes responsibility for the quality and accuracy of their work. General Welders are required to produce joints that satisfy basic quality standards in order to ensure that the finished products function correctly, contributing to the safety of all and the global quality of life.

Skilled, qualified, professionally certified General Welders can work anywhere in the world and provide services in harshest of environments. For these accomplished professionals, the monetary rewards can be significant.

There is a highly complex range of welding skills:  the different arc welding processes require different levels of manual dexterity, knowledge and skill to avoid making defective welds. There are a wide range of metallic materials that can be welded, each with different properties and behaviours.

Delivery Plan and Assessment

Learners will attend West Suffolk College one day a week for taught sessions, excluding half terms and holidays. In total, learners have to spend 20% of their time on programme completing Off-The-Job training, this includes their day release, and any shadow shifts. Apprentices will be supported by 1:1 meetings in the workplace by their dedicated Programme Tutor. Additional learning resources and information will be made available online to ensure a fully blended learning experience. 

Learners will be required to complete an End Point Assessment at the end of their learning.

Where will this course take me?

As well as ensuring full competence as an General Welder, this apprenticeship provides a foundation for potential progression into a higher level career in welding. These include progression to Multi-Positional Welder, High Integrity Welder or Welding Instruction and Teaching, Welding Inspection and Managing and Supervising Welding Operations.

Down to business, what can I do and what can I earn?

The minimum wage for apprentices is £4.15 per hour. However, the average wage for apprentices with WSC is £5.13 per hour.  Your wage is decided by your employer and most will look to reward excellent progress and completion of your apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

Whilst any entry requirements will be a matter for individual employers, typically an apprentice might be expected to have already achieved 5 GCSEs including Maths and English, Grade C or above or 4/5 (new grading). Some employers will accept other relevant qualifications and experience, including a relevant Level 2 qualification.

Apprentices without English and Maths at Level 2 must achieve these prior to taking their End Point Assessment.

Qualifications

On completion of the apprenticeship, you will have achieved:

  • Full General Welder (Arc Processes) Level 2 Standard.
  • Skills for Success - This module is designed by West Suffolk College to ensure you have all the personal skills and behaviours to succeed in the workplace.
  • Any required Functional Skills in English or Maths.

How is this funded?

Learners

Apprentices are not required to contribute financially towards Apprenticeship training.

Employers

If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of £3 million or more, you will pay into an apprenticeship levy. This levy is then used to pay for the training element of the apprenticeship course.  The total figure for the Apprenticeship is negotiated before enrolment and once confirmed will be taken in monthly payments from your account directly to us or paid to us via invoice should additional fees be required.

If you are an employer with an annual wage bill of under £3 million, the Government will fund 95% of the training fee meaning you will be required to contribute 5%.  You may be required to contribute additional fees which we will invoice the company for.  The additional fees will be made known and negotiated prior to the Apprentice enrolment.

There are additional incentives available if you are a small employer (under 50) and if you train/recruit a 16-18 year old or 19-24 year old with an Education Health and Care Plan.

Contact us on 01284 716246 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for further details of costs and how Apprenticeships are funded.

Try out our apprenticeship levy calculator here

I'm interested. What should I do now?

You apply for an Apprenticeship in the same way you would apply for a job: find an apprenticeship vacancy, send in your CV or complete an application. We can help you with applications and give you interview advice. Please view the following page on our website to see our latest Apprenticeship vacancies.

Apprenticeship Vacancies: https://www.wsc.ac.uk/find-a-course/apprenticeships/vacancies

Alternatively, you can look on the GOV.UK website to see what other Apprenticeships vacancies may be available: https://www.findapprenticeship.service.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsearch

Employers - Please contact us to speak with a member of the Apprenticeship Team for more information and to organise a face to face visit.

Days & times

Please contact us for dates and further information


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