In 2019, I joined Durham University as a technical apprentice after completing a levels in maths, physics and geography. Currently I work in the electronics workshop, with the potential opportunity of moving to different workshops across the department of physics in the future.
I’m currently working through a 2 year course focusing mainly on electronics, with periodic observations from an assessor from Sunderland College. I have designed and built a variety of circuits for both learning and practical purposes, including a motor driver circuit for some students to aid in their experiments, and more recently, a programmable power supply that, if successful, may be produced for use in other areas of the department. I have also had the opportunity to work with another apprentice, Hannah, in a joined project to create a waterwheel that will be installed into a local school, my part of the project was to design a simple gauge that determined how much electricity the wheel was producing.
As part of the apprenticeship, I had to learn how to use our CAD software package, Easy-PC for the designing of circuit boards, as well as learning to use the circuit router for creating the boards, and I also had to learn soldering techniques and some mechanical skills such as filing and operating a milling machine.
As for the future, upon completing my apprenticeship I will move up to a degree level apprenticeship, and look forward to the potential of moving around the department and getting a taste for the other workshops.