Friday, October 28, 2011

Chris Mew talks to Train4TradeSkills about his electrical course


So Chris, what were you doing before Train4TradeSkills?

I currently work for Royal Mail, I’m a deliver programmes manager. I basically work on the project team for the South West of England. I do this purely out of interest, because I was brought up in the trades industry as a lot of my family were in the trades and renovate houses. I can do a lot of the work, I just want to sign off my own work really.

How long have you worked for the Royal Mail then?

20 years.

What does your job involve?

Basically I am the person across the South West of England who deals with all the changes to Royal Mail. I’m getting rid of all the cycles and bringing in new vehicles, new equipment and new ways of working.

There’s a big transformation plan in Royal Mail at the moment across the country. It’s a 3 year deployment plan which finishes on March 2013. I’m the lynchpin of the project in the South West.

You mentioned you’ve had an interest in electrics. Have you been getting any electrical experience outside of your course?

Yes, I’ve rewired houses. Anything domestically, I’m completely OK with, which is the course I’m actually doing, as I’m only doing the 5 week one here.

Has all that experience helped you with your practical training?

Yeah totally it makes it a lot easier, because a lot of the stuff I can relate to. I personally think I would have struggled more if I didn’t have that experience, and the stuff I’m learning is really good – really enjoyable.

How are you finding balancing your course around your full-time job?

With my job it’s difficult as I’m travelling all over the South West. The training modules I think are brilliant to be fair. I did spend a year looking around for the right training provider and I chose Train4TradeSkills due to the location of the ATL training centre. Plus the book they supply.

Have you got any studying tips or ways of studying that you have found work really well?

I personally do it in small doses, I do it half hour to an hour at a time and then go off and do something else.  Like the books say, it’s all really down to the individual. If I read for too long my concentration goes. Give it an hour here and there and over the course of a week I do between 6-7 hours of study. It’s just different because I’m really interested in electrics anyway, so I’ve just found it really good and the books which I’ve got from Train4TradeSkills has really supported that.

What are your plans when you have finished your course?

Basically in today’s world with all the changes in Royal Mail, it does pay me to have a trade. My project finishes in March 2013, if after that there’s no positions in Royal Mail, even after 20 years, it pays me to have a trade. And because I have contacts in the industry to get work that way, especially with the qualifications. That’s my long-term future: to guarantee me, or as best as you can, a job somewhere.

Have you got any advice for someone who wants to train as an electrician or take up a trade?

Just go for it. If it’s something you really want to do, just go for it. Train4TradeSkills out of all the ones I looked at is really good and the information they supply. If you throw yourself into it you will enjoy it, if it’s something you really want to do.

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