From education to employment

Apprenticeship Leads Andrew to Career in Plumbing with ‘World Skills’

Photo of Andrew Reain on the NI Apprenticeship week graphic featuring a map of northern ireland

When Andrew Reain left school, he knew he wanted a trade and was considering his options for a career in electrical, mechanical, or plumbing.  Having decided on plumbing, the young man is on route to completing his Level 3 NI Apprenticeship in Plumbing and is set for a career which has included picking up some ‘World Skills’ along the way.  Andrew is keen to share why those who want to progress should consider the apprenticeship route ahead of NI Apprenticeship Week 6 – 10 February.

Andrew (18) from Dromara, progressed to SERC from Dromore High School after his GCSEs.   He said, “I wanted to progress and had been looking at my options.   I secured employment with Vincent Cunningham Contractors Ltd, based in Dromore and successfully completed my Level 2 Apprenticeship NI in Plumbing with SERC, and am progressing now with my Level 3.”

Andrew represented SERC at both Regional and National WorldSkills UK Finals, the latter in Middlesbrough when he competed against his peers from across the UK in November and has accepted an invitation to train for the WorldSkills UK Squad selection for WorldSkills Lyon 10 – 15 September 2024.

Participation in the competition offered valuable support and mentoring and included getting up to speed with the ‘new to the industry’ pipe bender which, unlike traditional pipe benders, have a built-in slide and different markings for angles.  

Andrew said, “The competitions have been challenging, and I am glad to have had the opportunity to take part. My parents, Judith and Paul, and my three brothers were all pleased and excited for me and I was delighted to represent my employer, Vincent Cunningham Contractor Ltd and SERC.”

Speaking about his day-to-day job and his apprenticeship, Andrew concluded, “I am working mostly in the local area on domestic jobs dealing with hot water cylinders and boilers.  I am enjoying the apprenticeship and am glad I decided on this route. I feel like I am learning every day and progressing all the time plus I am earning whilst I learn – the perfect combination.”

SERC are hosting Have a Go Sessions for potential apprentices 4.30pm to 7.00pm at Lisburn Campus – Monday 6 February; Bangor Campus -Tuesday 7 February; Newtownards Campus – Wednesday 8 February, and Downpatrick Campus – Thursday 9 February.

Visit to unlock your future #BetterOffAtSERC.

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