When he was 14, Joe met a civil engineer at a school careers fair. Hearing first-hand what working in engineering was like fired his interest and led him to an apprenticeship with one of the UK’s most cutting-edge organisations.
“I’ve always liked the idea of seeing something through, seeing things from the beginning and understanding how everything starts and works – turns out that that makes me really suited to working in engineering, and biotechnology in particular!”
Joe works in CPI’s biotechnology plant in Wilton, running biological processes which help turn ground-breaking ideas, dreamt up by research scientists, into real-life businesses that can make a difference. Day-to-day, Joe could be taking samples, conducting analyses and running plant machinery to carry out fermentations.
“The best thing about my job is that we work with really different processes all the time. One project we were doing was developing drugs for heart disease, the next was a synthetic replacement for animal feed. So, I’m always learning something new - it’s dead interesting!”
For Joe, being a technician means being analytical and thinking fast on your feet. “We need to be able to recognise if something isn’t working properly or needs changing. If people think that it’s an easy job, they should come try it!”
Joe's career pathway
- 2015 Left school after finishing his GCSEs. Began a full-time course at college but was soon offered a Process Technician apprenticeship with CPI
- 2016 Gained enough experience and knowledge to begin working onsite at CPI
- 2017 Began a HNC at Redcar college as part of his apprenticeship