Courtney, Engineering, US




I’m Courtney, I'm an engineering apprentice, and I’m in the third year of a four-year programme at GSK, studying for an Electronic and Technologies Associate's degree. My apprenticeship is a 50/50 split of work and study. It's never too much pressure because if you need more time to study, they'll accommodate you. There are always people here to support you if you need help with anything.

Before I joined, I didn't really know what I wanted to do. Then my mom came across this programme and so we came and took the tour, and I liked what they were talking about; how you get to help people and learn at the same time. Traditionally, there aren’t a lot of women in engineering and initially, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do this, but I’ve found that I really enjoy it.

Fulfilling bold ambitions

I'm basically a mechanic and I work on a production line that produces Ventolin inhalers. I come in at seven, check my emails and then continue with my work. If something on the production line breaks, or if the Mechanical Electrical Technicians (METs) need me to do something, I help. Right now, I do more mechanical stuff.  I prefer it to electrical because it's more hands-on and easier to understand. In fact, one of the most exciting things I’ve done so far was helping to build a new machine for a new line; we also got to train on it and see how it works.

My mom got sick the other day and had to get an inhaler. I said ‘We made that!

What I like most about working here

I love having a hands-on role where I get to build and re-build equipment. Sometimes, when the METs aren't around, I’m the only person who can help and it makes me feel really good that I can contribute and make an impact.

I also like the fact that everybody’s so nice here. Every time you see someone in the hallway, they say hi, even if you’ve never seen them before. If you need help with something or if you're having problems, people will help you and get you moving. If you want to do different projects or start a new project, they'll help you find something to do or direct you to someone who will help you start something new.

Looking ahead…

In five years' time, I would like to still be working here, perhaps as a mechanic like the METs. When I apply for a role after I finish my Apprenticeship, I will have great experience with the equipment and know how the machines work in detail.