CNC Academy boost for aerospace sector

Robert Hutchinson of ADS Northern Ireland with Gordon Kane, Northern Regional College and Ann Williamson of the Department for the Economy
Robert Hutchinson of ADS Northern Ireland with Gordon Kane, Northern Regional College and Ann Williamson of the Department for the Economy

The aerospace sector has been offered a boost with the introduction of a specialist training programme designed to increase skills for entry into the sector.

The scheme is a joint venture between ADS, the body representing firms in the industry, and Northern Regional College to offer individuals the opportunity to participate in their nine week Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Academy.

Supported by the Department for the Economy’s Assured Skills programme, the pre-employment training will provide individuals with the skills needed to prepare them for work as a CNC operator.

“This new CNC Academy is an exciting opportunity for anyone interested in gaining the skills and practical experience to work in local aerospace, defence and security companies,” said Ann Williamson head of employer skills for the Department.

“The Academy will help participants to build their confidence, learn new skills and gain valuable work experience.

“The Department continues to work with local companies and industry to help employers access the skilled staff needed to expand their business and boost the local economy.”

The academy will include five weeks training at the college’s Farm Lodge Ballymena Campus followed by a four week placement with firms in Belfast, Co Antrim and Co Down.

Highlighting its importance, Robert Hutchinson, business development manager at ADS NI said: “Through collaboration with the FE sector and government support we can help ensure our member organisations have access to the talent they need to grow.

“This Academy will help support local companies by equipping individuals with the skills they need for in-demand CNC operators.”

Gordon Kane, asst head of department, engineering and built environment at NRC said: “The College is committed to working in partnership with the business community and developing programmes relevant to their business needs and requirements. This Academy is the latest in a series of intensive training programmes we have developed with individual companies which have helped them to recruit the skilled workforce they need.”