This week our spotlight is on Apprentice R&D Technician Thomas Aram who joined Xtrac in September 2018.
What does your job role entail?
As an Apprentice R&D Technician I complete initial testing on upcoming projects, taking them from the flow visualisation through to the End of Line spin test. My role helps to ensure that the gearboxes we manufacture are to the exacting standard that Xtrac customers know and expect. Additionally, I contribute to development work on both new and existing transmissions.
What qualifications do you have / are you working towards?
So far during my apprenticeship, I have completed my HNC and HND in Mechanical Engineering, as well as an NVQ Level 2 and 3. I’ve also recently become affiliated with the IMechE as an EngTech. In September this year I’m looking forward to continuing onto my Degree Apprenticeship.
What inspired you to pursue the career you have today?
From a young age I had a lot of hands-on experience in motorsport and in secondary school I had the opportunity to spend two weeks at Lotus Formula One Team. This experience confirmed to me that a job in the motorsport industry was what I wanted and with Xtrac supplying so many different motorsport series, I knew the apprenticeship would be perfect for me.
What do you like most about your job?
I enjoy the variety of R&D work – every project uses a variation of different Xtrac rigs, allowing me to expand my knowledge of R&D testing procedures within multiple motorsport series. Every day brings a new challenge within the fast paced R&D environment.
Which of your career achievements are you most proud of?
Winning the Darren Huttle Apprentice of the Year award in 2019 was a big achievement at the start of my apprenticeship. Most recently, becoming affiliated with the IMechE as an EngTech has been another proud moment for me. And then of course seeing race teams all over the world using the transmissions that I have helped to test, research and develop is extremely rewarding.
Is there anything else you’d like to add about your Xtrac experience so far?
While being at Xtrac I have gained lots of valuable knowledge that has helped me to become the engineer that I am today. When working on cars when I was younger, I never thought that one day I would be helping to develop current generation race cars!