DOUGALL Baillie Associates (DBA) has introduced graduate apprenticeships to create ‘earn-as-you-learn’ opportunities for young adults.
The East Kilbride-based engineering consultancy is currently putting two recruits through a civil and environmental engineering degree as part of its company-wide training initiatives, the latest of which is membership of the UK’s 5% Club which promotes the creation of meaningful careers.
Stuart McDermott and Ross Cameron are currently midway through the Civil & Environmental Engineering degree at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) after completing the HNC at Glasgow Kelvin College. Their education has been undertaken on a day-release basis while progressing their career at DBA.
Stuart and Ross have been joined by two recent recruits who are following a new Graduate Apprenticeship initiative. They are Megan McGaw (18) from East Kilbride and Kieran Duffy (20) from Wishaw.
Megan is undertaking her degree course at Glasgow Caledonian University, specialising in structural engineering. She said, “I came into the DBA offices to do a week’s work experience and I enjoyed it so much that I stayed. It was pointed out to me that I could do four years at university and then come back, or spend that four years gaining experience with the firm and earning a very good salary. I can go to university one day a week to gain my degree.”
Kieran joined DBA from school and is now in the finals of the Apprentice of the Year category at this year’s Lanarkshire Business Awards. He said, “I began in a Modern Apprenticeship and gained my initial qualifications in civil engineering at Glasgow Kelvin College. I am now studying for my degree at Glasgow Caledonian and hope to build a worthwhile career as an engineer. DBA have supported me all the way.”
The company propose to sign-up a further two technicians to the Graduate Apprenticeship programme this year.
Director Scott MacPhail, who himself joined DBA as a graduate engineer, said, “It is very satisfying to be able to give these talented and dedicated young people the opportunity to work themselves up the ladder.
“There is a case to be made that people who come through the ‘earn-as-you-learn’ route gain a greater understanding of day-to-day practical issues and also of the firm’s ethos, than those who come into the profession straight from university.”