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Meet Our Apprentices: Nathan

CNC Machining apprentice

Nathan is undertaking a four-year engineering technician apprenticeship at KMF. Nathan decided to pursue an apprenticeship because he wanted to benefit from gaining practical experience as well as gaining academic qualifications. Once he has completed his apprenticeship he would like to progress into one of KMF's programming or NPI (New Product Introduction) departments and learn how to programme with CNC technology.

Name: Nathan Stockton
Role: 2nd year Engineering Technician apprentice at KMF Precision Engineering
Favourite Food: Pizza
No1 Netflix Show: At the moment, the Ted Bundy Tapes Documentary
Most played Artist on your playslist: Post Malone
If you were prime minister for one day, what would you do? Sort Brexit out

What has been your journey with KMF so far?

I came to KMF at 18 after studying an engineering BTEC qualification at college and I am now completing a 4-year Engineering Technician apprenticeship. This year I'm completing the last year of my level two NVQ and next year will begin working towards the level 3 engineering technician standard.

I spend one day a week in lessons at KMF's training centre and the remainder of the week working at KMF's CNC machining facility. I was part of the first apprentice cohort at the machining facility which was very exciting.

What made you choose the apprenticeship route?

I completed my BTEC and was torn between going away to university or finding an apprenticeship. I decided to pursue an apprenticeship because I thought I would benefit from gaining practical experience as well as academic qualifications.

I thought that having hands-on engineering experience, as well as academic understanding, would help make me more appealing to employers. I also thought learning by being hands-on would be more fun, actually running and operating the CNC machines rather than just reading about it!

How have your skills changed since starting?

As we move around different areas of the business, spending time on all of the different machines and with different employees in different departments, I've definitely gained more confidence and come of out of my shell.
We work alongside some really skilled machinists and everyone is more than happy to answer your questions and give lots of advice which is really helpful.

Spending three days a week in the brand-new training workshop during your first year is really helpful. You work on manual lathes and miller machines which allow you to get a high level of understanding of the machining processes before you move to the advanced CNC machinery.

After the first year, we predominantly work in the main machining facility running production orders and so you develop high attention to detail pretty quickly.

What part of your apprenticeship have you enjoyed the most?

Probably the out of bounds trip to Luchon which we went on late last year. We went away to France for one week and got to do some amazing team building activities such as canyoning through waterfalls and biking through the mountains.

We got the opportunity to challenge ourselves and spend time with the fabrication apprentices based at KMF which was really nice. I also turned 20 whilst we were there which was an amazing way to spend my birthday!

What are your aspirations after your apprenticeship?

Once I've completed my apprenticeship I would like to move into one of KMF's programming or NPI (New Product Introduction) departments, so that's learning how to set and programme the machines.
I would enjoy working with new clients and working out the required machining process, whether it needs to be turned or milled and the order of operations. I'd enjoy being faced with a challenge and having to work towards a solution.

If you have any questions regarding our award-winning engineering apprenticeships, please email us or give us a call 01782 569060.

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