On November 22nd Toyota GB hosted an inspiring and informative Automotive Apprenticeship event at the Toyota Academy in Derby in collaboration with Gaia Innovation; a fellow member of the UK Automotive 30% Club. Over 50 young female students and staff came together to learn about apprenticeships in the automotive industry. The students were inspired to consider both technical and non-technical roles in a STEM related industry.
The Automotive Apprenticeship day was highly regarded for its engaging sessions, including a range of informative presentations and interactive activities. The workshop sessions on the day included:
Discover Toyota – In this session, students engaged with the ‘world of Toyota’ through a presentation given to boost their awareness of Toyota’s history and heritage.
Toyota Careers – Customer Care – Current Apprentices and Trainers provided students with an understanding of the roles of Service or Parts Advisor at Toyota dealership. They were also informed of career opportunities and the recruitment process.
Apprenticeships – This session gave the female students a technical overview of fuel cell technology, the service technician apprenticeship programme, and the qualifications that can be gained from the programme.
Toyota Manufacturing – The students were then given an exciting tour of Toyota’s manufacturing plant. This engaging and hands-on session enabled students to understand how robotics work. They were also informed of the apprenticeships available within manufacturing and how this could benefit the industry in the future.
Feedback from both the guests and the Toyota team indicated that the event achieved the goal of inspiring young women to consider apprenticeships and careers in the automotive industry. This is a key aim of the UK Automotive 30% Club, and of Gaia Innovation and Toyota GB.
Emily Christie, Year 11 Student at Trinity Academy comments: “The whole day has given me a great insight into what happens in a manufacturing plant. Today has changed the way I view apprenticeships in the automotive industry. I have learnt how vehicles work and what is behind the scenes during the manufacturing process.”
“Not only has it been an inspirational event, but it has been a great and engaging experience for students to take part in, especially the practical workshops and activities. It’s been an eye- opening day for the female students who haven’t considered a career in the automotive industry. Targeting the females was an excellent idea. After speaking to them, they are certainly inspired to further their career in the automotive industry.” Jamie Utley, Community Enterprise Coordinator at Netherwood Academy
“What I really liked was seeing how the trainers engaged with students. It was great seeing different areas of the academy work together to present four different distinctive activities.” Paul Craven, General Manager, Toyota GB
Robin Giles, Director – HR & Corporate Operations at Toyota GB, comments: “It was fantastic to see the group of school girls gradually learning and discovering the world of apprenticeships at Toyota today. I believe they have now gone away with a different perception on what opportunities are available for them and hope they will consider this in the future. Growing our talent pipeline is fundamental and we have got to get more young people in. The Academy is a positive statement for the automotive industry, and enables us to showcase inspiring events like this. We need more women in our industry as the skills required evolve and to ensure we have the diversity of thinking in everything we do!”
At the close of the event Julia Muir, CEO of Gaia Innovation and Founder of the UK Automotive 30% Club gave a speech to the girls about the need for them to equip themselves with the necessary personal, social and technology skills for working in the machine and robot dominated 4th Industrial Revolution. She told them how growth sectors such as automotive have huge skills deficits, that there are no “male jobs and female jobs” and that we need more women to work in advanced technology industries. She said that at the moment cars are largely designed by men, engineered by men, built by men, sold by men, but are bought by women, in fact 80% of global car purchase decisions are influenced by women.
Julia Muir, concludes: “The way this generation of students are using technology is actually changing the present way we live our lives as well as shaping the world in the future. We need a better gender balance in the creation and sale of our product to better reflect the customer base. In an apprenticeship, students can develop personal, social and technology skills required in the real world of work. I am extremely pleased that Toyota provided the opportunity for female students to hear this message, and to leave inspired to consider an apprenticeship in the automotive industry.”
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