From education to employment

Ryanair apprentice Tomos flying high after engineering course

Former Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor student Tomos Jones has seen his career take off after he gained an apprenticeship with Ryanair Engineering.

Tomos, 19, has landed a four-year-contract with the airline working at Stansted Airport, and is on his way to becoming a qualified aircraft maintenance engineer after being selected from more than 1,000 applicants.

He successfully completed the Level 3 Enhanced General Engineering course at the Hafan campus in his home town of Pwllheli. This included 16 topics, the Welsh Baccalaureate, Performing Engineering Operations workshop skills and 150 hours of practical work experience.

A year after Tomos completed his course, engineering lecturer Emlyn Evans caught up with him to find out what he has been up to.

He told Emlyn:

“I’m on a four-year contract with Ryanair, undertaking a two-year course with them to earn my Civil Aviation Authority CAT A and a Level 3 in aircraft maintenance.

“The familiarity of this course with what I studied at the Hafan has contributed to my success as I excel in the program. Additionally, the opportunity to earn while learning has been amazing, and I eagerly anticipate becoming a fully qualified aircraft maintenance engineer debt-free.”

Tomos said the experience he gained at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor helped him soar above the rest when it came to the selection process for Ryanair.

Tomos Jones has started a four-year contract as an engineering apprentice at Stansted Airport

He said: “After completing my GCSEs, I enrolled in the Level 3 general engineering course at the Hafan campus.

“This decision was driven by my uncertainty about which engineering path to pursue, but fortunately, this course covered a wide range of sectors, helping me discover the best fit for my interests and aptitude.

 “What truly appealed to me about this course was the diverse blend of assessment methods. I appreciated the opportunity to showcase my learning through a combination of exams, assignments, and practical work. The hands-on applications and assignments allowed me to demonstrate my understanding of engineering concepts in a more engaging and creative manner.

“Assignments were the primary mode of examination during the course, and I found them to be incredibly stimulating as an aspiring engineer. Unlike exams that have limited correct answers, assignments encourage creativity, enabling us to devise unique solutions to various problems. This approach nurtured our ability to think critically and analytically, preparing us for real-world engineering challenges.

“The Hafan’s workshop facilities were exceptional, providing a comprehensive range of machinery and tools for machining and bench fitting.

“This hands-on experience was thrilling and enjoyable, as it exposed me to an entirely novel environment. The opportunity to translate theoretical knowledge into practical applications was invaluable and provided an uncommon learning experience.”

Tomos praised the tutors at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor for their dedication, saying:

“Throughout the course, the tutors offered unparalleled support, going above and beyond to assist students after hours and assigning tasks that prepared us effectively for our assignments.

“Their dedication and guidance significantly contributed to our success and growth as aspiring engineers.”

He added: “Thanks to this course, I have acquired the perfect qualifications to progress further in my career.

“With Level 3 and PEO certification, I stood out from the crowd during the apprenticeship application with Ryanair. Although the application process was challenging, my comprehensive engineering knowledge and effective question-answering techniques from the Welsh Baccalaureate played a vital role in securing my position among the top 10 candidates out of more than 1,000 applicants.”

Nadine Houghton, training programme co-ordinator for Ryanair Engineering, said:

“Tomos has made an excellent start to his apprenticeship after joining Ryanair in March this year. He has consistently scored high marks in his exams and has an excellent attitude towards learning.

“We set high expectations for our trainees and Tomos has certainly met that challenge with hard work, dedication and a genuine interest in aircraft engineering. It is early days for Tomos but if he continues to excel as he is currently, he will no doubt have a very successful career ahead of him.”

Emlyn Evans, who is the program leader on the 14-16 schools provision and a tutor on the Level 3 general Engineering course at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor, said:

“We as staff are so proud of our learners, and it’s a worthwhile and satisfying role we have in the education sector, especially when our students progress into the field of engineering after the excellent teaching they have received at the Hafan.

“We wish Tomos all the best for the future and hope he comes back to the Hafan to talk about his experience after leaving college and going into the world of work.

“For any budding engineers who would like to follow in the footsteps of our past learners or who are not sure yet of the career path they wish to study within the engineering discipline, the General Engineering course is a great foundation to cement your engineering skill set.”

For more information about the Level 2, 3 and 4 courses on offer at Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor, Pwllheli and Dolgellau, contact Emlyn Evans via email ([email protected]) or click here.

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