How industry supports curriculum development at SWDT

As we continue our celebration of #NAW2024 today we feature one of our key employers.


SWDT delivers apprenticeships in engineering maintenance and manufacturing at GSK in Barnard Castle and their Ware site located in Hertfordshire.

As we continue to develop our curriculum in line with local and regional employers’ skills needs, we are being supported by specialist skills advisors from industry, including Lee Ainsley, Senior Equipment Project Engineer & Engineering Apprentice Lead at GSK, Barnard Castle.

Lee said: “I am the Engineering Apprentice Lead at GSK Barnard Castle and over the last three years I have had the pleasure of working with SWDT. They have always maintained good communications and are approachable to solve problems, even to an individual apprentice level.

“This enables us to work with them to deliver a, regionally renowned, multi-skilled apprenticeship that is proven in delivering outstanding Engineering Technicians of the future.”

Tim Buchanan, Apprenticeship Levy Lead, Global Supply Chain at GSK, added: “SWDT has worked in partnership with GSK to create an innovative delivery model utilising technology to deliver manufacturing apprentices in Ware, just a mere 230 miles south of Newton Aycliffe.”

Richard Wright (Senior Business Development Advisor at SWDT) says: “I have worked for SWDT for seven years now and have signed up 47 apprentices in either maintenance or manufacturing roles in that time.

“I have always found GSK’s onsite management support for the apprentices to be excellent, with clear guidance and regular reviews of their progress. The company has a vested interest in developing their early talent and actively encourages them to progress within the company.”

#NAW2024 #SkillsForLife