Studying at a UTC
Joining a brand new school was a brave decision for Chloe but both she and her parents believed it would offer the best opportunities, and she wasn’t wrong. The UTC Norfolk's links with industry and local companies meant that Chloe connected with employers and experienced the world of engineering on countless occasions.
My understanding of the engineering industry has greatly improved. No matter how much research you do, you can never fully appreciate something until you witness it for yourself. I’ve been able to speak with employers, take part in competitions that can get you extra qualifications and awards, do work experience; it’s all shown me that the engineering industry is a rapidly evolving and exciting place to be.
The links with industry don’t just benefit students outside the school gates. State of the art technology is standard in the classrooms at UTC Norfolk, which was one of the main draws of the school for Chloe. And it’s not just for show or special occasions; students are trusted to use the high spec machinery on a daily basis.
The school is a fantastic facility – classrooms are situated at the centre of the open workshop and we are very fortunate to have access to all the high tech machinery and equipment. I can confidently say that I have used every piece of machinery at least twice!
As well as the physical aspects of the UTC, one of the biggest differences between her old school and UTCN is the enthusiasm that students have for their subjects. Having a shared passion with her peers has really inspired Chloe and she has found assignments, studying and group work much more manageable and enjoyable, and of course she’s made some lifelong friends.
Looking to the future
Chloe is confident that her Degree Apprenticeship will set her in good stead for the future.
I have heard from employers about numerous cases where they’ve brought in graduates who have amazing degree qualifications but little or no industry experience, and these new employees have failed to complete simple tasks, sometimes resulting in damaged equipment and profit losses.
With two years of industry led curriculum already under her belt there is no danger of Chloe being unprepared for the world of work.
Looking beyond her own future Chloe hopes to inspire other young girls to follow in her footsteps. As one of just four girls in her year at UTCN Chloe says she was aware of the gender imbalance but that it didn’t affect her negatively in any way, and she doesn’t want girls with a passion for engineering and other STEM subjects put off by stereotypes and stigmas.
The idea that girls aren’t as good as boys at engineering and science just doesn’t even exist at UTCN. If you have a passion for your subject, follow it through and if your subject is engineering then a UTC could be exactly what you need to get you into your dream job. It’s certainly put me on the right path to mine!