Charlotte Mortimer, an apprentice with Angel Trains, received the ‘special recognition’ award at the inaugural apprentice conference and awards dinner held by the National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR) – celebrating the achievements of apprentices, colleges and employers from across the rail network.
The 19-year-old, from Danefield Road, Abington, Northampton was praised for excelling on her BTEC Mechanical Engineering course, completing assignments to a very high standard and supporting her peers, which helped fellow students to pass vital modules.
Charlotte attended industry events such as Big Rail Diversity Challenge and helped to host a Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) day for sixth form students from Northampton College at NTAR.
She said: “I’m thrilled to have won this award and hopefully this can be the start of a long career in an industry that I love. I have learned so much in such a short space of time and being able to practice my skills alongside such a knowledgeable and welcoming team has been a huge help.
“I always wanted to work in rail as I commuted a lot to Liverpool and enjoyed the journeys. I get the benefits of working for a leading rail employer and training at the state-of-the-art facility at NTAR.”
Charlotte’s programme is comprised of multiple modules ranging from mechanical principles and electrical installation in the college workshop to specialist units on passenger comfort and rail traction systems at NTAR.
Charlotte is developing knowledge of engineering drawing, health and safety, and materials and also building on practical skills by making components such as drill drifts. Competency on each module is tested by completion of specific assignments.
Charlotte will go on to take placements in a real working rail maintenance environment, and will build up an e-portfolio of evidence of her Technical, Occupational, and Professional competence, securing her position as a ‘TOP’ technician in the industry.
Her tutor at Northampton College, Neil Tobin, said: “Charlotte has displayed an incredible work ethic and a real appetite for learning. She is dedicated, ambitious and a quick thinker. It’s extremely pleasing to see her doing so well and putting into practice the skills she has picked up throughout her course.
“We are helping to prepare a new generation of workers who think for themselves, are confident in their ability and can work well both on their own and as part of a wider team. We’re equipping people with invaluable skills that can set them up for life.”
NTAR is a multi-million pound state-of-the-art facility based in Kings Heath, Northampton, acting both as a UK flagship and an international centre of excellence for skills development and collaborative working in traction and rolling stock.
The centre works alongside Northampton College to address a skills gap that would otherwise become a barrier to both maintaining and growing the workforce on the railways.