Students and parents given overview of apprenticeship and employment options in local companies


Students and young people attending a recent event in Obair, Newmarket on Fergus, were given the unique opportunity to interact with local employers to discuss opportunities in their respective organisations.

The event, which was organised by Obair and Shannon Chamber in conjunction with the Rural Development Directorate of Clare Council, involved representatives from Atlantic Aviation Group, Edwards Lifesciences. Lufthansa Technik Shannon and Zimmer Biomet giving presentations on the apprenticeships they provide and the job opportunities coming on stream within their respective organisations.

Representatives from Atlantic Aviation Group (AAG), which performs maintenance, repair and overhaul on Boeing 737s, 757s and 767s outlined their four-year aircraft maintenance apprenticeship, two years of which involves practical experience in AAG’s hangar in Shannon and two years of theory involved AAG Shannon and Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT).

Outlining the success of this programme, which commences again in April 2019, AAG’s Ciara Leahy stated: “We have had great success with our apprenticeship programme; we have trained the last five IrelandSkills champions and two of the last three WorldSkills champions. Also, our trainees get a globally recognised qualification through gaining an EASA Part 66 Cat B Aircraft Maintenance licence.”

A relative newcomer to Shannon, Ireland Lifesciences outlined its plans to grow employment to 600 and the type of roles that will need to be filled; roles ranging from leadership opportunities, planning, quality control, assembly, engineering and finance. The company currently operates from an interim facility at Shannon Free Zone with construction on its new purpose-built manufacturing facility at the National Technology Park in Limerick set to commence in February.

Commenting on the benefits of an event of this nature, Shannon Chamber CEO Helen Downes said: “Many young people, while somewhat aware of the companies that operate from this area, don’t necessarily understand the employment opportunities that exist within them. Taking the companies out into the community gives students and their parents the opportunity to talk directly to executives from companies and map out their individual journeys to employment. It’s a relaxed environment and one which we have found works for younger people. They feel less inhibited at an event of this nature.

“This was the first time Shannon Chamber, Clare County Council and local community organisations, like Obair, have joined force to offer new ways to support young people in the communities of Clare. We plan on doing a lot more of this level of interaction in the future and will certainly be maintaining an dialogue between our local schools and companies,” Ms Downes added.