Emma Crane

Southampton   09 September 2020
Technical Apprentice

Meet Emma Crane. She joined Leonardo as a Manufacturing Apprentice, but has since transferred onto the company’s Technical Apprenticeship scheme.

What did you study at school?

I studied at Lytchett Minster School in Poole, and did GCSEs in Maths, English Language & Literature, Science, ICT, Business, PE, and Resistant Materials.

What apprenticeship are you completing?

I am currently a Technical Apprentice; however, I originally started as a Manufacturing Apprentice. The Manufacturing Apprenticeship allowed me to gain vital knowledge and hands-on experience with our products. This has aided me in my Technical Apprenticeship because I am fixing the problems and improving the processes that I have previous experience with.

Why was an apprenticeship the right path for you?

An apprenticeship was the right path for me because I am a practical person; I learn a lot by actually doing the task in hand. I started my apprenticeship when I was 22 to try and kick start a career in engineering, as I had no previous experience or qualifications.

Why did you join Leonardo?

Leonardo was the one company that stood out for me because I wanted to do an apprenticeship where I would learn a lot about different aspects of engineering. With all the various products that Leonardo produce, this was the best opportunity to further my knowledge and start my career in engineering.

What is your current role at Leonardo?

My current role at Leonardo is a Process Engineer. I am process champion for seven processes within the components sector. This means that if there are any major issues with the equipment, or if there is a problem with some of the products, then it’s my job to understand and fix the issue. I am also involved in improvement projects within my seven processes as we are always trying to continuously improve our processes.

Tell us what you do in a typical day

Typically my day varies, a lot of the time I can plan to do various jobs in that day but if a problem arises within the factory line, that becomes my top priority as I need to keep production moving. 

What do enjoy most about your job?

The top thing that I enjoy about my job is the amount that I learn every day; I am currently on a steep learning curve since I took on this role as process champion.  Also, I love how much my job varies. I’m not stuck doing the same thing every day, which keeps my role very interesting.

What have been your biggest achievements at Leonardo so far?

My biggest achievements so far are winning Regional Apprentice of the Year twice in a row. In addition, I have been shortlisted for the Make UK Apprenticeship awards.

What related activities are you involved with outside your specific job role?

The activities that I like to get involved with outside of my role are STEM and charity activities. I have been involved with Rampaging Chariots, which is a Leonardo-run event that sees children from 11-15 years building robots to fight it out in Robot Wars type events. I have also been involved with running various charity events such as a New Forest cycle ride, a pancake flip and a treasure hunt to help raise money for our apprentice charity, Combat Stress.

What are your career aspirations?

My career aspiration is to become a well-established Process Engineer within the optronics sector. Then, I could progress to become a Principle Industrial Engineer.

Why should someone consider an apprenticeship at Leonardo?

Anybody looking for a career in engineering should definitely consider Leonardo because it is a great company to work for. The company has helped me to progress in my career by moving me from a manufacturing to technical apprenticeship. In addition, there are various opportunities that will keep you intrigued and extend your knowledge in engineering. At the Southampton site, everyone is welcoming, approachable and very helpful. This makes it a great environment to work in.      

What are you doing after your apprenticeship finishes?

After I have finished my apprenticeship, I am hoping to stay in my role as a Process Engineer and carry on with the other STEM and charity events that I like to get involved in.

Apprenticeships at Leonardo

Apprenticeships at Leonardo

Our highly-regarded apprenticeship programmes – covering hardware and software engineering, business and cyber security – offer intensive training programme lasting 2-4 years, which results in apprentices graduating with a substantial depth of skills in their specialist area.