I'm an Atkins Civil Engineering Apprentice AMA Watch

Rhys Satchell
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Hello,

I'm a 21 year old Apprentice with Atkins one of the worlds biggest engineering consultancies.
I've been with the company 18 months, please feel free to ask me anything relating to my apprenticeship, Atkins, or how I got into this role.

Thanks
Rhys
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JBLondon
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Is it hard being an apprentice engineer whilst also not eating carbs?
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Rhys Satchell
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(Original post by JBLondon)
Is it hard being an apprentice engineer whilst also not eating carbs?
An interesting Question, I assume this relates to my personal interests? I worked as a chef before stating with Atkins, so my meal prep is pretty good, also due to being able flexi-hours I have plenty of time to eat properly.

Also working from different offices within Atkins has allowed me to meet many like-minded "gym-goers"
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Smack
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(Original post by Rhys Satchell)
Hello,

I'm a 21 year old Apprentice with Atkins one of the worlds biggest engineering consultancies.
I've been with the company 18 months, please feel free to ask me anything relating to my apprenticeship, Atkins, or how I got into this role.

Thanks
Rhys
What is your actual role as part of this apprenticeship? And what sort of tasks do you get involved with?

What sector(s) are you currently doing projects for?
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Rhys Satchell
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(Original post by Smack)
What is your actual role as part of this apprenticeship? And what sort of tasks do you get involved with?

What sector(s) are you currently doing projects for?
Hello!!
My actual role has developed a lot my line manager now tells me I'm useful!! Everything I do is design based whether its before, during or after construction I help produce drawings/reports for our clients. Currently I support engineers by using AutoCAD to draft drawings and develop designs whether this is through 2D drawings or 3D models.

I work in Networks and drainage engineering, which is a sub-area of what Atkins calls Water, Ground & Environment.
A couple of projects I worked on are a Water treatment works which provides drinking water for Wiltshire, and I am currently working on updating a current sewage treatment works in Swindon.

I've been involved with designing structural slabs for generators, the design and detailing of buried pipework, creating accurate ground models, a new buried concrete trench for HV cabling, I've also spent some time doing flow and flood analysis.

I mostly just work within the Water sector at the moment because I'm still pretty fresh in the business but I work alongside people that have done designs for Nuclear and Highways projects.

If you want to know anymore about any of the above feel free to drop me a personal message and I'll go into a bit more detail, but I hope that answers your queries and makes a reasonable amount of sense!!

Cheers
Rhys
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6jack
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Hi there I know it's not (directly) related, I've had interviews at WSP and Mott MacDonald and I'm just waiting to hear back from them.
The one thing that worries me is the progression onto uni in order to achieve CEng status. Do you know if this will be possible? What's the course like at college? How's the job, it seems pretty exciting tbh!
Thanks
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Rhys Satchell
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(Original post by 6jack)
Hi there I know it's not (directly) related, I've had interviews at WSP and Mott MacDonald and I'm just waiting to hear back from them.
The one thing that worries me is the progression onto uni in order to achieve CEng status. Do you know if this will be possible? What's the course like at college? How's the job, it seems pretty exciting tbh!
Thanks

Hello 6jack, great news on your interviews I hope you do well.
I'm glad you asked - I've just gone through this process with Atkins, and I had the same concern for long time. We've had some internal restructuring so its been a bit difficult for me. However in normal circumstances its likely that Motts or WSP will have a bench mark grade that they want you to achieve after your 2 years at college for Atkins this was a minimum of Merit-Merit, on top of this its likely that you will also need to pass your NVQ and show an interest in the professional body the represents your job area for example - for civil engineers this is the ICE.
its also important to drop lots of hints to your line manager/mentor so they know your very interested and they'll help you out along the way, you'll need their support as the decision is often made a lot higher up in the hierarchy as it will be a business decision due to cost etc.

Also be aware that it might not be a direct progression from college to CEng, most apprenticeships take a vocational route for example BTEC level 3, HNC/HND, then a top up year. I know Atkins alongside several engineering firms have decided adopt an Degree route and run that as part of an apprenticeship but this is still under development.

So the progression is more than possible, you've just got to tick boxes basically
- Do well at college
- Do well at work
-Show an interest in furthering your education
-'Push' to get on that HE course

Having said all this I don't know Motts or WSP's procedures this is just form my experience.

I've enjoyed my time at college as much as I can, its been a bit difficult for me because I moved house after my first year at college and had to transfer colleges as well, I was then with a college who hadn't run the course before for apprentices so it was a bit unorganised and we came under a lot of pressure at the end but I've finished its all good and I'm starting a HNC in September.

My advise to you would be, find out what grade you need for the further studies aim for that in college, don't over work yourself because the experience in work is extremely important as well. Get your NVQ out of the way because it'll just linger over your otherwise.

Most of all enjoy it I love what I do now its really interesting and I'm continuously learning and of course I get paid to do it so its win-win-win.
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6jack
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(Original post by Rhys Satchell)
Hello 6jack, great news on your interviews I hope you do well.
I'm glad you asked - I've just gone through this process with Atkins, and I had the same concern for long time. We've had some internal restructuring so its been a bit difficult for me. However in normal circumstances its likely that Motts or WSP will have a bench mark grade that they want you to achieve after your 2 years at college for Atkins this was a minimum of Merit-Merit, on top of this its likely that you will also need to pass your NVQ and show an interest in the professional body the represents your job area for example - for civil engineers this is the ICE.
its also important to drop lots of hints to your line manager/mentor so they know your very interested and they'll help you out along the way, you'll need their support as the decision is often made a lot higher up in the hierarchy as it will be a business decision due to cost etc.

Also be aware that it might not be a direct progression from college to CEng, most apprenticeships take a vocational route for example BTEC level 3, HNC/HND, then a top up year. I know Atkins alongside several engineering firms have decided adopt an Degree route and run that as part of an apprenticeship but this is still under development.

So the progression is more than possible, you've just got to tick boxes basically
- Do well at college
- Do well at work
-Show an interest in furthering your education
-'Push' to get on that HE course

Having said all this I don't know Motts or WSP's procedures this is just form my experience.

I've enjoyed my time at college as much as I can, its been a bit difficult for me because I moved house after my first year at college and had to transfer colleges as well, I was then with a college who hadn't run the course before for apprentices so it was a bit unorganised and we came under a lot of pressure at the end but I've finished its all good and I'm starting a HNC in September.

My advise to you would be, find out what grade you need for the further studies aim for that in college, don't over work yourself because the experience in work is extremely important as well. Get your NVQ out of the way because it'll just linger over your otherwise.

Most of all enjoy it I love what I do now its really interesting and I'm continuously learning and of course I get paid to do it so its win-win-win.
Thanks for the reply Rhys.
Hopefully they get back to me soon! Yeah at the interviews, WSP said you'd go down the HNC/D route and then degre whereas MM said they'd give you 3/4 years leave to do a degree. Yeah I've read little bits about the degree apprenticeships. But it is the only thing that worries me whether or not I'll be able to progress and work towards CEng.

It sounds okay then, yeah from what I've read the college course seems to be the downfall of the apprenticeships but it does depend on the college from what I'm reading as some colleges seem to have okay and good reviews from apprentices! What's the college day like? Is it long?

Yeah I think that's what was going to sway me towards it, you're earning experience in something which sounds interesting and fun, while getting paid to do it.

Thanks Jack.
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Rhys Satchell
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(Original post by 6jack)
Thanks for the reply Rhys.
Hopefully they get back to me soon! Yeah at the interviews, WSP said you'd go down the HNC/D route and then degre whereas MM said they'd give you 3/4 years leave to do a degree. Yeah I've read little bits about the degree apprenticeships. But it is the only thing that worries me whether or not I'll be able to progress and work towards CEng.

It sounds okay then, yeah from what I've read the college course seems to be the downfall of the apprenticeships but it does depend on the college from what I'm reading as some colleges seem to have okay and good reviews from apprentices! What's the college day like? Is it long?

Yeah I think that's what was going to sway me towards it, you're earning experience in something which sounds interesting and fun, while getting paid to do it.

Thanks Jack.
In that case I would sway towards WSP purely because of the experience you get. Being in the workplace is where you'll get the most out of your apprenticeship its great that Motts will pay for your degree and probably guarantee you a job after but on paper after the 3/4 years to have a degree or a degree and experience the later looks a lot better. You will be able to progress however you like your work will not stop you bettering yourself because it looks good on them but whether its funded through the apprenticeship is something different - I don't know anyone whos got to that level on an apprenticeship so I cant say, I know Atkins have gone as far as putting someone through their masters.
If work wont support you through it consider a open university degree or perhaps finding another work place who will support you, but I think for now focus on getting through whatever WSP or Motts will throw at your before you start and then those first 2 years.


I honestly wouldn't worry about the college side of things, its all matter of opinion, those were just my experiences, its up to you what you make of it. The college day can be slightly longer or it might not, it my first year we had a lot of freedom to come and go as we pleased as long as we got the work done some days I was in 10-12, however my second year which is harder anyway and at a different college we were expected to be in at least 9-6 with an additional hour for support.

Cheers Rhys
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6jack
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(Original post by Rhys Satchell)
In that case I would sway towards WSP purely because of the experience you get. Being in the workplace is where you'll get the most out of your apprenticeship its great that Motts will pay for your degree and probably guarantee you a job after but on paper after the 3/4 years to have a degree or a degree and experience the later looks a lot better. You will be able to progress however you like your work will not stop you bettering yourself because it looks good on them but whether its funded through the apprenticeship is something different - I don't know anyone whos got to that level on an apprenticeship so I cant say, I know Atkins have gone as far as putting someone through their masters.
If work wont support you through it consider a open university degree or perhaps finding another work place who will support you, but I think for now focus on getting through whatever WSP or Motts will throw at your before you start and then those first 2 years.


I honestly wouldn't worry about the college side of things, its all matter of opinion, those were just my experiences, its up to you what you make of it. The college day can be slightly longer or it might not, it my first year we had a lot of freedom to come and go as we pleased as long as we got the work done some days I was in 10-12, however my second year which is harder anyway and at a different college we were expected to be in at least 9-6 with an additional hour for support.

Cheers Rhys
It's a tough one, it's the choice between that or my experience from the interviews and enthusiasm. But I'll just see what happens and then decide from there on! They're both excellent multinational and sector companies so it's a struggle to decide! That's if I get offers...
Yeah I think either way I will be able to eventually get my Masters which will allow me to work towards CEng but it might just be a little longer than the usual A level-uni route however I'll have more experience in the real world.

Alright cheers, yeah I've seen that, like I've seen some days are long and a challenge but others aren't as bad.

Thanks Jack
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Ibrahim_
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Hi, I am currently in second year of college and haven't had any luck in finding an apprenticeship in civil/structural engineering in the north west region preferably. Do you know of any available apprenticeships in civil engineering or possible networks that provide apprenticeships?

Many thanks
Ibrahim
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Rhys Satchell
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(Original post by Ibrahim_)
Hi, I am currently in second year of college and haven't had any luck in finding an apprenticeship in civil/structural engineering in the north west region preferably. Do you know of any available apprenticeships in civil engineering or possible networks that provide apprenticeships?

Many thanks
Ibrahim
Hi Ibrahim, it's a good time to be looking as companies will be hiring Apprentices to join over the summer and start their degrees in September - I would recomend looking at: https://www.notgoingtouni.co.uk/ I found (and got job offers) from two different companies through that site I really rate it

Let me know how you get on!
Rhys
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username3973192
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(Original post by Ibrahim_)
Hi, I am currently in second year of college and haven't had any luck in finding an apprenticeship in civil/structural engineering in the north west region preferably. Do you know of any available apprenticeships in civil engineering or possible networks that provide apprenticeships?

Many thanks
Ibrahim
This is a good one but unfortunately it's in London https://www.notgoingtouni.co.uk/oppo...engineer-44957
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Chevelle23
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Hey Rhys, I’m looking into applying to degree apprenticeships in civil engineering and for me I’ll definitely have to relocate for it as there are no opportunities where I am. I’m aware uni accommodation is out of the question, so I’m wondering how it works. Is there a way for me to get in contact with other apprentices in a similar situation so we can rent together? Do the companies provide support in finding a place? Or do I have to simply figure it out myself and move into a share house if I can find one that’ll accept an 18 year old?

Cheers,
Chev
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finnlalljee
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Hey Rhys,I've been invited along to a Assessment Centre for the civil engineering degree apprenticeship and was wondering what yours was like? Anything to expect in particular?CheersFL
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januzaj44
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Hey rhys, I just found out I’ve been offered a job as a civil engineer apprentice with Atkins in Scotland!! So excited, can’t wait to start! Can you tell us about how your career has now progressed? Have you tried to pursue a degree? Further qualifications? I know my current starting wage but wasn’t keen on asking how it may rise. How was your salary progressed as you have progressed? Did you find some stuff more difficult than others throughout your apprenticeship, also was yours 2 years long?? Thanks in advance man appreciate it, can’t wait to get started
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