Bethany Cousins is an award-winning apprentice

 November 09, 2015

Bethany Cousins grew up with a passion for maths and physics at school, and with her parents owning an engineering company it seemed an obvious choice to pursue an apprenticeship with the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) Training Centre.

Bethany started her employed-status apprenticeship with the AMRC Training Centre in October 2013, on a BTEC course learning the basics of milling, turning and hand fitting. She is on now mid-way through a HND in manufacturing engineering and is on course to move up to an engineering degree.

“After discussion, I decided an apprenticeship would be the best path to choose for me, over university, as I knew I would gain practical knowledge as well the technical background. With my AMRC apprenticeship, I will be able to reach degree level in my studies without having to go through four years of university - plus I will have learned skills that are not available through a university course.” Bethany explains.

The University of Sheffield’s AMRC is made up of a cluster of industry-focused manufacturing R&D centres and the AMRC Training Centre is a centre of excellence for talented engineering or manufacturing apprentices looking to develop skills and experience.

Beth’s achievements have been recognised and rewarded by the AMRC. Beth was awarded one of the AMRC's yearly apprentice awards. “The 'Sandvik Coromant' Machining Apprentice of the Year" award.

Beth was thrilled to be selected for the award. “It was such a fantastic way to finish my apprenticeship and so rewarding that my hard work and determination have been recognised and appreciated.”

IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year Award

Beth has applied for the prestigious IET Young Woman Engineer of the year award which celebrates the very best women engineers and technicians and their contribution to the engineering industry. Beth is hugely excited about the award and the importance of what it stands for. “This excellent award promotes woman in engineering and demonstrates how engineering not just a job for boys. I see myself as a passionate hard working engineer who loves what they do. I take pride in my work and strive to do well. I would love to be a role model for other women considering a career in the industry and demonstrate how women can excel in an engineering environment.”

The IET Young Woman Engineer of the year award celebrates women's visibility and success in the STEM field and the University of Sheffield’s AMRC Training is an excellent vehicle for recognising emerging female talent.

Inspiring future women engineers

Initiatives such as the AMRC Training Centre Apprentice of the Year Awards, as well as the various IET awards which celebrate exceptional female talent are essential. Creating female roles models for future workers changes the perception of the engineering industry which is vital to increase the pipeline of future female engineers.

Bethany advises “I'd thoroughly recommend a career in engineering to any women who are interested in STEM subjects and enjoy a hands-on approach. There are only a handful of women in every apprenticeship class, but if anything, this has made me more focused to prove I can excel in my chosen career path.”

Beth acknowledges the role that initiatives such as the AMRC play in encouraging women into engineering. “I would always speak highly of the AMRC to all women I meet. They have been more than supportive, and I have never had anyone I work with expect less of me because I am a woman. I have always been encouraged and have thoroughly enjoyed working alongside talented professionals.”

Learn more about apprenticeship opportunities with the AMRC Training Centre and the University of Sheffield's research. Don’t forget to celebrate emerging female engineering talent and apply for the IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year awards.

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