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Copeland MP visits BAE Systems to meet with apprentices

[T]he MP for Copeland has met with apprentices at one of the country’s leading training facilities.

As part of the 11th annual National Apprenticeship Week celebrations, Apprenticeship Ambassador, Trudy Harrison MP joined staff and apprentices for a tour of BAE Systems’ Academy for Skills and Knowledge in Lancashire.

Located in the Samlesbury Aerospace Enterprise Zone, alongside BAE Systems’ Military Aircraft Advanced Manufacturing Centre, the academy is equipped with the latest technology and equipment that is used to manufacture combat aircraft including Eurofighter Typhoon and F-35 Lightning II.

The centre works to train apprentices and graduates in the company’s military aircraft business as well as providing life-long learning and skills development activities for 13,000 employees.

Mrs Harrison, said: “BAE Systems is one of the UK’s leading apprentice employers, the skills being taught are world class.  Innovation is in everything BAE stand for, I received a fascinating insight to our defence capability and the precision engineering requirements.

“The apprentices are benefitting from state-of-the-art facilities, industry expert teaching and they get to travel all over the world, graduating at the end of their course with technical and academic skills and the ability to reverse engineer, problem solve and work in effective teams.”

Designed and built in three years, the state-of-the-art facilities include the latest advanced manufacturing technologies and factory layouts used at BAE Systems including robotics, 3D printers, a virtual reality ‘cave’, a composites clean room, electronics and welding facilities.

The Academy utilises knowledge and experience of the Company’s training staff to provide a state of the art learning environment and acts as a collaborative skills hub for the North-West Engineering and Manufacturing sector, providing a learning education centre for school children aged between five and 14-years-old.

Steve Fogg, Managing Director Shared Services at BAE Systems, said: “We are very proud of our apprenticeship and graduate programmes and were delighted to show Trudy the focus we are putting into the training and development of young people for the future. Today has been a very enjoyable visit and we hope Trudy got great value out of her time with us, as much as we did.”

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