Full speed ahead for Nylacast Engineering Training Academy

February 2014

With people as their most valuable asset, worldwide Engineering Polymer provider Nylacast continue to show investment in people with the opening of our new Engineering Training Academy. People, Polymers and Passion, the 3 Ps of Nylacast. Nothing exemplifies this more than by taking a look around the new purpose built Engineering Training facilities, located at their manufacturing site in Leicester, UK.

With common talks of a skills shortage in engineering, the investment into a training academy was the next progressive step for the company, building on the success of the Engineering Apprenticeship scheme they run. However, the new Nylacast Engineering Training Academy will not only be utilised by young students coming into engineering; another focus of the facility is the ability to upscale the skills and knowledge of the current workforce and reward the loyalty of long serving and dedicated employees with structured training programs and opportunities to further their knowledge and gain qualifications.

Mussa Mahomed, Group CEO officially opened the Academy on Wednesday the 26th February and commented, “All of us at Nylacast are very excited and enthusiastic about the investment we have put into the Academy, there is a known skills shortage within Engineering which needs to be addressed. Not only does the Academy provide us with a competitive edge in industry but also allows us to focus our continuous investment in our most valued assets, our people and their dedication.”

The Nylacast Engineering Training Academy features a number of dedicated teaching rooms for various training topics and methods, including a state of the art engineering simulator room, which allows students to learn, practice and build up their confidence working with machines in a controlled, simulated environment before heading out to the live production facilities. Another attribute of the new academy is the machine room, which features a number of scaled down manual machines.

Manual machines? In a new training academy? No doubt two valid questions, however in an age where CNC machines are controlled by computers it is important to remember the computers will only do what they are programmed to do. This is why Nylacast wanted to take the ethos of the engineering academy back to basics, similar to the old school, time served engineering academy’s which many of their current engineering team went through in the early stages of their careers. By having exposure to manual machines it provides the students with vital skills and experience on core engineering aspects such as speeds and feeds, tooling and machining techniques, to provide a full understanding not only of how to undertake a machining job, but why it needs to be done in a particular manner. With a dedicated facility now in place, Nylacast look forward to increasing the awareness of engineering within schools, colleges and communities.

Ian Mallabone, Group HR & Training Manager said, “These are exciting times at Nylacast, not only will the Academy be used to house our current training and apprenticeship schemes, but will importantly allow us to expand on our Learning & Development as a company both internally and externally to help bridge the engineering skills gap and help build the engineers of tomorrow. We may have state of the art machinery in our production facilities, however without the right level and calibre of Nylacast engineers to operate and run the technology it would be deemed futile.”

The opening of the Nylacast Engineering Training Academy was marked with an opening evening attended by invited guests from many of the local educational institutes which Nylacast currently work on projects with, as well as members from Leicestershire Cares which Nylacast work in collaboration with on numerous community and education projects. The evening consisted of the guests being shown around by members of the Nylacast team and even having 3 interactive teaching sessions, putting them in the shoes of the students for an evening and experiencing firsthand some of the structured learning the Academy students will go through.

Monica Kimche, Director of Leicestershire Cares commented, “So much thought has gone into addressing the engineering skills shortage. Nylacast has taken a wonderful, proactive step towards ensuring that young people get the right support and now, state of the art practical training, in order for them to become the best trained engineers anywhere. The opening evening was fascinating and the enthusiasm, dedication and loyalty of all the Nylacast team was amazing.”

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