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Students experience a day in the life of a Ford engineer

Aspiring engineers from Havering Sixth Form College were taken on a visit to Ford Dunton Technical Centre for a tour and the chance to take part in design workshops.

The 18 students – all in the upper sixth year of the Engineering BTEC Diploma course – saw the company’s newest cars being designed and were given a talk on the different types of apprenticeships and training schemes run at the Centre in Laindon, near Basildon.

They also took part in some group engineering activities where they designed a futuristic car.

The students who took part in the visit were: Gurminder Bains, George Cane, Connor Gear, Bryan Ibrahima, Nathan Mansfield, Jesse Martin, Emilija Minialgaite, Luca Palumbo, Jack Payne, Rinor Pireva, Freddie Pollock, Waseeuddin Rafid, Max Rankin, George Rowe, Thomas Rowley, Tjan Shillingford, Rhiannon St Pier and Ben Wood. They were accompanied by the College’s World of Work Officer Kay Williamson, Engineering and Design tutor Guy Reid and Engineering and Design facilitator Anneliese Attack.

One of the students said after the visit: “The trip was a fantastic experience that opened my eyes to how a Ford apprenticeship would work. It was also interesting to see the different processes that they have developed towards creating cars for the future.”

Another student said: “It was good to see all the different sectors of a motor engineering company and how they come together to create a single car. It gave us an insight into all the processes that have to take place in order to build a car. I really enjoyed the visit and learning about a Ford engineer's work day and work place.”

Vanessa Clayden, from Ford, said the students enjoyed being shown the high speed and surfaces test track and learning how they are integrated into engineering research.

She said the engineering activities included a tour around three of the labs - NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness), ETL (Environmental Test Lab) and Rapid Prototype.

Vanessa added: "I wanted the students to see the alternative routes available to them into an engineering career, rather than just through university.  They found the day beneficial as they picked up on knowledge which will aid them for their BTEC project and hopefully gave them food for thought when it comes to choosing apprenticeships."

The Dunton Technical Centre (Ford Dunton) is a major automotive research and development facility and houses the main design team of Ford of Europe, alongside its Merkenich Technical Centre in Cologne, Germany. Around 3,000 engineers currently work at Dunton.

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