Why pursue an apprenticeship in gas engineering?
An apprenticeship can take you in all sorts of interesting directions. Find out what our apprentice gas engineer has to say about his learning journey.
We chatted with 17 year-old Adam China, who is in the first of his three-year Gas Engineer Apprenticeship for Hackney Council while studying with Choice Training, Dagenham. Here’s what he had to say about his experiences so far.
What is your apprenticeship course and level?
I’m studying a 3-year Gas Apprenticeship, which includes 2 years’ plumbing (level 2), and 1 year gas.
Why did you choose the construction industry?
After my GCSEs I felt confident enough to go into full-time further education, however I was concerned about the crushing debt that pursuing a degree might leave me with. So I decided to get into an apprenticeship to get the practical experiences that could open doors to other interesting careers.
Why did you choose this apprenticeship and what other options did you consider?
My teachers encouraged me to pursue full-time further education, but I believe the current education system favours students from economically advantaged backgrounds. This gives them a greater opportunity to thrive, whereas I felt that I had to make hard decisions about my future, which will hopefully pay off if I apply the skills I’m learning to my chosen career.
Can you tell us about some of the practical skills/techniques you're learning?
I’m currently being taught all about the installation and maintenance of domestic boilers as part of my apprenticeship with Training Trust. I’m also learning about servicing and repairing gas appliances and heating systems; these include gas fires, boilers, cookers, central heating and hot water storage cylinders.
Can you tell us about some of the social skills that you're learning?
My training includes dealing with vulnerable people (e.g. those with physical and mental disabilities). I’ve also learned how to deal with terminally-ill patients and received training on how to protect myself against dangerous people and environments when I’m working. It’s a dramatic change to school life… for one thing there’s no summer holiday!
What do you hope to do once you finish your apprenticeship?
In 5-10 years I hope to be retired! I want to be the owner of a small business and not have a day-to-day role.
Why would you recommend an apprenticeship to a school leaver or someone who is considering a career/education change?
Everyone’s abilities differ and university isn’t suitable for everyone. This doesn’t mean that they can’t excel at university, but if you want to progress in more practical subjects specifically, apprenticeships can give you a lot of support to pursue those interests. If you want a varied job that puts your practical skills to good use then an apprenticeship is the ideal choice.
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