ASTeC Celebrates National Apprentice Week 2018!
06 Mar 2018
- Michelle Keeley



Louise Smith tells us what it's like to be an Apprentice in ASTeC



[STFC 2018]

ASTeC department are fortunate to have 4 apprentices working within the department, two of which work directly in the Programmes and Facilities Office. 

Louise Smith and James McKinney are currently undertaking Level 4 Associate Project Management apprenticeships within our department.

On top of their project management work in relation to their apprenticeships, Louise and James also help with a number of different tasks within the department such as budget reviews, managing risk, reporting, scheduling and general administration tasks within the group and wider department.

Today we spoke to Louise who shared her experiences so far of working in the Programmes and Facilities group

Local to Warrington, Louise graduated from Hope University in June 2017 after studying Psychology and English Language. After looking into the world of work, Louise noticed that there were great opportunities available to be able to pursue a career, whilst learning at the same time.


Louise's Top 3: Words to describe undertaking an apprenticeship within ASTeC:

  • Dynamic
  • Engaging
  • Proactive

Louise's Top 3: Things I've learned so far

  • The basis of project management
  • All about the CLARA project and what it aims to achieve in the long term.
  • That all project have different life cycles and different processes and should be treated individually.

I feel I am respected and treated equally despite the age gap and my lack of scientific background. Everyone has made me feel part of the team."

ASTeC department strives to create an inclusive and welcoming environment where apprentices can access their full potential in a scientific setting, even if they don't necessarily have a background in science. Louise doesn't come from a scientific background but has a good understanding of the importance of science in our modern society. This understanding encouraged Louise to pursue an apprenticeship which she felt would be both "intriguing and challenging at the same time".

In her spare time, Louise enjoys visiting the gym around 5 times a week and is working towards completing a 10k race. She is also a big fan of music and spends her time travelling and attending festivals and concerts. 

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Louise and James are also working as Project Managers together with the Technology Department's Electrical Engineering apprentices to work on the GreenPower IET 24+ Challenge, where together, they are planning and implementing the build of an electric race car that will compete in 3 races. The aim is to create a car that's both durable rather than merely focussing on speed.

Keep an eye out on the ASTeC website this week to read more experiences from our amazing apprentices.

You can find out more about apprenticeships at STFC by visiting

Contact: Keeley-Adamson, Michelle (STFC,DL,AST)